WBA CSR report spotlights own brand sustainability efforts

David Salazar
Managing Editor
David Salazar profile picture

Walgreens Boots Alliance’s latest report on its corporate social responsibility efforts is shining a light on its global sustainability efforts, particularly with regard to its own brands. 
“Our purpose at WBA is to help people live healthier and happier lives,” said Ornella Barra, WBA’s co-COO and the chairman of the company’s corporate social responsibility committee. “Everyone deserves the opportunity to fulfill his or her potential, regardless of where one lives. That’s why we mobilize our incredible employees and invest resources in issues that impact our patients, customers and society. We believe in our ability to effect positive change in communities around the world.”

As part of the report, the company said that it has adopted a commitment to reduce the negative impact of plastics in its own brands, including its health and beauty brands — No7, Liz Earle, Botanics, Soap & Glory, Sleek MakeUP and more — and its Walgreens and Boots UK house brand products. This was most marked in the U.K., where during the 2019 holiday season, Boots UK and its suppliers representing roughly half of its private brands managed to cut down the amount of plastic used in gift packaging by 149 metric tons. 

“While this new commitment focuses on our owned brands because this is an area of our operations where we have control and can make a significant impact, we are also working on numerous initiatives to reduce plastics in our retail and wholesale operations, to educate and inspire consumers and employees around how they can make a difference on the plastics issue and to work with industry groups on comprehensive solutions,” the report says. 

Walgreens Boots Alliance noted that it also is working on sourcing its own brand products — including its nice! Food and beverage brand and its Boots Soltan sun care brand — sustainably. 

“We require vendors for our owned brand products — which include health, beauty, home products, food, paper goods and other categories — to use a safety testing lab that we select,” the report says. “These vendors agree to and are responsible for rigorous product testing on a regular cadence to help ensure they meet regulatory requirements and our own high standards related to safety.”

To read the full report, including the company’s efforts to support cancer patients and its work with Vitamin Angels, click here