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Brief Published: 17 Jun 2020

Unilever Adopts On-Pack Carbon Labelling


Unilever – maker of leading brands like Marmite, Pot Noodle, Lipton, Knorr and Colman’s  – is following in the footsteps of UK plant-based protein brand Quorn by adding carbon labelling to 70,000 of its products. The move comes as part of the global FMCG giant’s ambitious new set of climate goals that involve neutralising all emissions from its operations and those of its suppliers by 2039.

This sort of initiative will strike a positive chord with post-pandemic consumers, who are reconciling their relationship between ethics, values and personal food choices. In particular, over the course of the outbreak, consumers have become more concerned with climate change and the fragile health of the planet. In line with this sentiment, Unilever has also pledged to invest $1.1bn in climate-friendly initiatives over the next decade.

 “While the world is dealing with the devastating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and grappling with serious issues of inequality, we can’t let ourselves forget that the climate crisis is still a threat to all of us,” said Unilever’s chief executive Alan Jope in a statement.

For more on Quorn’s carbon labelling initiative, see The Brief. Meanwhile, our Post-Pandemic Food Labelling report examines how brands are moving towards more transparent systems, which provide consumers with a clearer view on their production processes. Key topics covered include the rise of organic (as a marker of ‘clean’ ingredients and production) and increasing importance around the humane treatment of animals (an amplified consumer concern in the wake of the pandemic).

See also The Post-Vegan Opportunity for more around ethical farming practices.