You may have spotted our current advertising campaign which is running in The Midlands area of the UK (April/May 2023). If you've any questions or comments regarding what you've seen please get in touch via email@example.com. And in the meantime, you might like to read through some of our supporting data and background information below.
Last updated March 2023
We talk about the amount of plastic laundry packaging sold in the UK.
We say “Over 70 million plastic laundry packs end up as waste every year.”
The script, final ad and claim were all approved by Clearcast, the authority responsible for approving TV advertising in the UK.
Our data source for the above statistic is Kantar sales data for the 52 weeks leading up to November 2022.
To calculate the “over 70 million…” we
- Took the total packs sold during the 52 weeks to November 2022
- Excluded all sales of powder detergent (historically not sold in plastic packs)
- Excluded all laundry capsule sales from Ariel, Fairy and Bold
- Excluded the % of plastic that is recycled in the UK (according to Greenpeace "The Big Plastic Count" 2022)
The remaining figure (over 70 million packs) is the plastic sold and wasted in the laundry category; packs which are incinerated, sent to landfill, or sent abroad.
Why did we exclude Ariel, Fairy and Bold capsules?
These 3 brands moved their capsules into a card based pack during Q2, 2022. Their new card packaging does still contain some plastic and was only launched mid year but we excluded the 3 products in their entirety, in order to ensure that our “over…” claim was correct beyond doubt.
This TV ad has also been made available nationally on YouTube and via social media.
Outdoor poster advertising:a) No plastic. Fantastic.
The UK’s first plastic free packaging for laundry capsules.
smol launched 100% plastic-free packaging for laundry capsules in March 2020 and was the first brand to do so in the UK. Some brands (Fairy, Ariel, Bold) moved to card packaging (not 100% plastic free) in 2022. They have been followed by some supermarket brands and Persil in 2023.b) Bubble Trouble
Big laundry brands use unnecessary foaming chemicals. We don’t.
SLS (sodium lauryl sulphate) is a surfactant that has historically been used by many laundry brands to add foam and bubbles to the wash. In fact this ingredient is NOT the active cleaning agent in those laundry detergent formulations. We therefore consider it to be unnecessary and we do NOT use SLS in our laundry detergent formulation. Whilst formulations are private to each brand, at the time of the campaign, our information suggests that at least 2 leading brands (together representing over 25% of laundry capsule market share at January 2023, Kantar) use SLS in their formulations and historically has been added for a cosmetic effect, a gimmick to enhance the perception of cleaning.c) No Bunny Business
Unlike big laundry companies, we never test on animals.
smol does not believe in animal testing for our products OR the ingredients used to create them. We are accredited by Cruelty Free International, one of the three organizations that give official certifications to brands around the world, alongside Peta, and Choose Cruelty-Free. More information on Cruelty Free International and their Leaping Bunny Programme can be found here. Searching for smol brand name will confirm our listing as a cruelty free business, across our total home care range of products.
Neither Unilever (manufacturer of Persil and Surf laundry detergents, UK) or P & G (manufacturer of Ariel, Bold and Fairy laundry detergents, UK) are named on the websites of any of the above three organisations. According to Kantar data (to January 2023), these 5 brands collectively represent over 70% of laundry capsule sales. We do note that Unilever is referenced on Peta’s page “brands working towards change”. For further information regarding policies towards animal testing at Unilever and P & G, we reference the following company website pages:
“Occasionally, across our wider product portfolio, some of the ingredients we use have to be tested by our suppliers to comply with legal and regulatory requirements in some markets; and some governments test certain products on animals as part of their regulations.”
“P&G no longer animal tests any consumer product unless required by law and we are committed to make animal testing obsolete.”