Kao Corporation has announced that the full-scale expansion of in-store sales of Smart Holders, which can be used repeatedly without needing to be refilled, and which are utilized together with Kao shampoo or conditioner film-type refill packs, will begin on April 11, 2020, in Japan. This is one of the initiatives being launched in relation to Innovation in Reduction, a priority action under the Kirei Lifestyle Plan (Kao's ESG strategy), and will contribute towards realizing Zero Waste, one of the 19 key leadership actions specified in the Plan.
Recognizing its responsibility as an enterprise that provides products which people use on a regular basis in their daily lives, the Kao Group takes active steps to reduce the environmental footprint of its products throughout the entirety of the product lifecycle. In April 2019, Kao launched the Kirei Lifestyle Plan, its ESG (environmental, social and governance) strategy, which incorporates 19 key leadership actions. Kao is now beginning the full implementation of related activities by enhancing its core value of Yoki-Monozukuri that it has built up through its corporate activities to realize "Yoki-Monozukuri with ESG integration (ESG-driven Yoki-Monozukuri)." Kao defines Yoki-Monozukuri as a strong commitment by all members to provide products and brands of excellent value for consumer satisfaction. It plans to further strengthen its initiatives incorporating environmental and social considerations, aiming to establish a global corporate presence.
Regarding the issue of plastic waste, which is a significant problem for society, Kao has for some time now been contributing towards the resolution of this issue by making the material used for plastic containers thinner, promoting the use of refill packs, making products more highly concentrated, and shifting over to larger-sized containers, etc. In addition, last autumn Kao announced that it would be focusing on Innovation in Reduction and Innovation in Recycling, so as to help realize a society characterized by effective plastic resource circulation. As part of these efforts, Kao is introducing ways to utilize new film-type packaging as a measure to speed up the shift away from using rigid plastic bottles.
In 2016, Kao launched its new Raku-raku Eco Pack Refills for high-viscosity products such as shampoo, conditioner and body wash. Not only does the Raku-raku Eco Pack Refill make refilling easier, because it is made of film-type material, the amount of plastic used in refill container production can be reduced by approximately 80%. As a result, the amount of CO2 emissions generated in the entire process from production to disposal is reduced by around 3%. Kao's Smart Holders, which are now going on sale in stores, are designed to be used together with the Raku-raku Eco Pack Refill and can be utilized repeatedly without needing to be refilled. A further point is that the Smart Holder makes it possible to use up all of the contents of the Raku-raku Eco Pack Refill without any being wasted, and the bottom of the Smart Holder features a special hygienic design that stops it from getting slimy. Since the Smart Holder was first launched in 2017, it has mainly been sold online. Now, by starting full-scale sale of Smart Holders in stores, we believe that we can make it easier for more consumers to access the Smart Holder, and that its convenience will encourage even more widespread use of environmentally-friendly Raku-raku Eco Pack Refills.
In the future, the Kao Group will continue to implement its unique ESG activities globally, so as to deliver satisfaction and enriched lives for people around the world, and contribute to the sustainability of society.
Kao creates high-value-added products that enrich the lives of consumers around the world. Through its portfolio of over 20 leading brands such as Attack, Bioré, Goldwell, Jergens, John Frieda, Kanebo, Laurier, Merries and Molton Brown, Kao is part of the everyday lives of people in Asia, Oceania, North America and Europe. Combined with its chemical division, which contributes to a wide range of industries, Kao generates about 1,500 billion yen in annual sales. Kao employs about 33,000 people worldwide and has 130 years of history in innovation. Please visit the Kao Group website for updated information.