Unilever PLC, is adopting technology that will cut the amount of plastic it needs to use in each bottle by 15%. The announcement was made today, Earth Day.
The technology, developed with Zotefoams PLC of Britain, injects tiny gas pockets into bottle walls, reducing the weight and amount of plastic used, without sacrificing robustness.
Unilever is introducing the technique first in its Dove body wash bottles, which — over the 33 million sold in Europe in 2013 — would mean a savings of 275 tons of plastic.
Spokesman Marc Potma said Tuesday the company will expand the technique to other product lines, then relinquish patent rights by 2015 so other companies that wish to employ the method can do so.