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Henkel Adhesive Technologies

Henkel Adhesive Technologies

Adhesives role in driving sustainability for home appliances

From consumers’ perspective, global consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products, and for a brand that gives back to society and has a low carbon footprint.

Eric Zhai
Global Market Strategy Manager, Appliance and HVAC

4 min.
This is an image showing different home appliances

Sustainability becomes an integral part in global home appliance market

From consumers’ perspective, global consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products, and for a brand that gives back to society and has a low carbon footprint.

From appliance manufacturers’ perspective, sustainability is seamlessly integrated into everything they do, from gathering consumer insights, developing products, sourcing, supply chain and production, branding, and marketing. Most manufacturers have set clear goals such as eliminating harmful materials, striving for carbon neutral production footprints, zero waste to landfill as well as increasing renewable energy usage, recyclability rate of products.

From regulations & policies perspective, on one hand, we see enhanced restrictions for volatile organic compounds (VOC) content and the use of hazardous and toxic materials. On the other hand, policy makers across the globe continue to push the right-to-repair approach as well as incentivize high energy-efficiency appliance devices such as latest inflation reduction act (IRA) in US.

At Henkel, sustainability is a core element of our company purpose: “Pioneers at heart for the good of generations”. Our 2030+ Sustainability Ambition Framework outlines the goals of driving change toward a regenerative planet, thriving communities, and acting as a trusted partner to our stakeholders.

This is an image explaining the 3 points which drive sustainable impact

How can Henkel drive the impact specifically for appliance market?

Zooming into appliance market specifically, many players throughout the value chain haven't considered the role of adhesives in sustainability.  However, adhesives do have a significant impact for sustainability and Henkel is committed to advance the cause in the following focus areas:

1. Climate

We help appliance manufacturers on their scope 1&2 related CO2 / energy reduction and dematerialization.

We support decarbonization at the manufacturing phase by driving a less energy consumed curing process, and enabling a streamlined manufacturing process resulting in less material consumption during production, what’s more, helping appliance manufacturers to reduce material waste and scrap.

In addition, we also play an active role in decarbonization at the end use phase by enabling reliable performance for green appliances such as invertor air conditioners, energy efficient smart refrigerators, heat exchangers and heat pumps.

This is an image explaining different sustainability points

2. Circularity

We strive to maximize renewable carbon content by changing from fossil-based materials (e.g. based on crude oil and natural gas) to biomass-based materials (e.g. from plants and trees).

Meanwhile, we are innovating the debonding technologies to enable separation of different materials post full cure for reuse, repair, refurbish, remanufacture, and/or recycle purposes to create a circular system.

3. Safety

We advance the chemical safety of our solutions and drive improved occupational health and safety for our customers as well as consumers.

We make sure to enhance health at the appliances’ manufacturing phase by eliminating and reducing hazardous raw materials from formulation as well as the ones that create vapor during production such as Solvent, Oxime, Isocyanates.

Moreover, we also enhance safety at product end use phase through offering excellent flame retardant and high temperature resistant performance.

Beyond regulation pushes on health and safety, we proactively take responsibility to develop healthier and safer products throughout manufacture, application, and end use phases.

This is an image of people putting their hands on top of each other, showing a team effort

For all the above, innovation is one of the most important success factors that we are doubling down on, thus we are able to strengthen our pioneering position for sustainability and to accelerate the market transition towards sustainability. 

What’s more, we can’t make it happen alone. The strong and constructive collaboration and partnerships with customers and other players throughout the value chain is also the key to success. 

In addition, it is important to drive sustainability early enough at the product definition and design phases.

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