27 January 2010 22:59 [Source: ICIS news]
ORLANDO, Florida (ICIS news)--US big box retailer Walmart seeks to work with the cleaning industry to make the ingredients in products more transparent to customers, part of its goal of developing a sustainability index, an executive said on Wednesday.
“We are focused on our consumers, and they want to know what’s in their products. For us, consumers are the ultimate arbiter,” said Alberto Luiz Dominguez, vice president, divisional merchandise manager of household paper goods and chemicals for Walmart.
Dominguez was speaking at the annual Soap and Detergent Association (SDA) meeting in Orlando.
“Creating transparency is a long-term deal, which doesn’t have to be legislative based. We need to get together to deliver this solution, and we are open for ideas and suggestions coming from the cleaning industry,” Dominguez added.
He emphasised that part of Walmart’s sustainability initiative is to create a mechanism to give customers the information they want.
Aside from chemical disclosures and transparency, other sustainability projects Walmart is considering include decreasing packaging use in its products; increasing the availability of recycling; using alternative fuel and renewable energy in its operations and distribution; reducing greenhouse gas emissions from its operations; and improving the sustainability of its buildings.
Walmart announced its Sustainability Product Index in July with the goal of setting standards and metrics on the sustainability of each product the retailer sells, from how it is made to how it is used and disposed of.
Dominguez said Walmart expects to have something in place under this index in the next 3-5 years.
“Our goal is a global sustainability index. This is very complex, and work is ongoing. We encourage everybody to be part of this project,” Dominguez added.
The SDA meeting ends on Saturday.
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