The Envelope Please: DuPont Announces Winners of Annual Sustainable Growth Excellence Awards

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The Envelope Please: DuPont Announces Winners of Annual Sustainable Growth Excellence Awards

DuPont employees convened in Wilmington, DE to celebrate the annual Sustainable Growth Excellence Awards.

DuPont employees convened in Wilmington, DE to celebrate the annual Sustainable Growth Excellence Awards.

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Congratulations to winners of DuPont employee Sustainable Growth Excellence Awards!
Thursday, May 19, 2016 - 10:25am

CAMPAIGN: DuPont Sustainable Innovations

CONTENT: Article

At DuPont, our people are not only the engine driving our performance but also the inspiration behind our commitment to sustainability.  For more than two centuries, they have identified opportunities, made connections, taken risks, and developed new innovations to exceed our customers’ expectations. 

That’s why DuPont launched its Sustainable Growth Excellence Awards (SGEA): to honor the outstanding achievements of our people around the world who are helping us – and our customers – achieve sustainable growth.  In 2015, a global panel of external and internal stakeholders convened in Geneva, Switzerland to judge this year’s nominations against the following three categories:  Footprint Reduction, which supports our commitment to finding innovative ideas to increase safety or reduce energy, water, emissions and waste generated at our sites; Stakeholder Engagement, working with communities, governments, non-profits and advocacy groups to create opportunities for the business while providing increased value to society, and; Serving the Marketplace, with new products or services that protect people, reduce emissions or create energy efficiencies for our customers, and generate revenues from non-depletable resources.  

While there were many competitive nominations, representing nearly every region in which we operate, the judges ultimately selected 6 winners.  They were honored at a ceremony at our corporate headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware last week.  The chosen honorees exemplify our commitment to excellence, and we are extremely proud of their accomplishments.  The winners are:

  1. Tyvek® Cargo Covers: Cool Covers Are Hot

Millions of people depend on pharmaceutical products to maintain and enhance their health and quality of life. Preserving the efficacy of medicines through the supply chain has become a top priority. One of the most vital challenges is maintaining pharmaceutical products at their recommended storage temperatures through the supply chain.  To address the challenge, DuPont™ Tyvek® developed and introduced a line of cargo cover products that leverage the unique properties of Tyvek® to provide superior protection against temperature excursions versus the incumbent “passive” offerings. Tyvek® covers are the clear choice for sustainability-focused pharmaceutical companies, third party logistics providers and airlines. Tyvek® cargo covers are manufactured from recyclable high density polyethylene (HDPE) and create 85 to 99% less volume waste than the competitive, bulky, “passive” products.   The result is a product that helps saves lives and money while also helping to reduce waste. 

  1. Asia Pacific Product Stewardship Day – A Best Practice

In 2013, DuPont Crop Protection developed and implemented the first Asia Pacific Product Stewardship Day.  Stakeholders at all levels were invited to engage in simple, yet creative, activities to promote six key stewardship principles: The proper use of personal protective equipment(PPE), integrated pest management(IPM), product label awareness, pest resistance management, proper disposal of used containers and awareness of counterfeit products. In 2014, Asia Pacific Product Stewardship Day was honored with an Agrow Award for Best Public Outreach Program. Now in its third year, the 2015 Asia Pacific Product Stewardship Day had 21,000 farmers, students, distributors, retailers and government officials participate – the largest event to-date.

  1. The Science of Cool:  Breakthrough Enzyme Expands the Benefit of Cold-Water Washing Globally

DuPont Industrial Biosciences launched PREFERENZ™ P 280, a new enzyme that works on protein stains such as blood and grass stains.  This novel protease enables the development of a laundry detergent that at 60° Fahrenheit matches the cleaning performance at 90° Fahrenheit.  Clothes washed at lower temperatures means lower energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, and savings on energy bills for consumers. The synergistic enzyme-detergent system was developed in collaboration with The Procter & Gamble Company (P&G), and will also help P&G achieve its sustainability goal to have 70% of all washing machine loads use cold water by 2020.  DuPont and P&G are the joint winners of the 2014 Sustainable Bio Award for Bio-Based Product Innovation of the Year.

  1. Enabling Commercial Beer Production Using Local Crops in Africa

Home-brewed beer made from ingredients such as sorghum and cassava has been produced in Africa for years, but commercial production of beer from locally grown crops has been a challenge because of their low enzyme content.  Sorghum is one of the most important crops for the world’s poorest and food-insecure people. The crop is well adapted to Africa’s climate; it can grow in hot and dry conditions where it is difficult to grow other food grains such as barley and requires little use of fertilizers or irrigation.  DuPont’s Industrial Biosciences (IB) and Nutrition & Health (N&H) businesses developed an enzyme solution, Alphalase® Sorghum, enabling commercial production of affordable clear lager beer from unmalted sorghum, and reducing food safety risks associated with home brewing.  An added benefit is that the energy- and water-intensive malting process is unnecessary.  The solution helps promote local agriculture, local jobs, and local production and consumption.  

  1. Waste water reduction in Brazil a benefit for the local community and the environment

DuPont’s production plant in Pirapozinho, Brazil, produces a wide range of food ingredients and systems for a large number of food companies. Naturally, the plant uses a lot of water in the production process. It also generates more than 15,000 M3 of wastewater annually that must be treated before entering the public water treatment system.

“Over a two-year period, DuPont has reduced the water consumption by making the wastewater flow system more effective, resulting in less sludge and wastewater. This has a positive impact on the environment and it also results in local employment opportunities for companies that may use the sludge as a constituent in products such as fertilizer, “says Matthias Heinzel, President DuPont Nutrition & Health.

The results have been remarkable and will hopefully serve as inspiration for companies with similar challenges. The Brazilian plant experienced a high reduction (32%) of residual effluent disposal cost from reduced waste water volume and COD (Chemical Oxygen Demand) reduction. Reductions have also been achieved in residual sludge disposal (63%).

“One of the greatest challenges facing the world right now is a scarcity of clean and safe water. This is why we prioritize to create sustainable systems that contribute to preserving the environment,” says Heinzel.

  1. DuPont™ Bynel® enables the commercialization of sustainable, starch-based bag

Consumer brands increasingly recognize that sustainable packaging presents an opportunity for differentiation and many already have goals for sustainable packaging in place.  However, matching cost and performance properties remain a challenge for companies seeking to use bio-based materials as a replacement for conventional fossil-based materials.  The DuPont Performance Materials’ Ethylene Copolymers technical team collaborated with BiologiQ, a recently founded bio-plastics producer, to address this challenge.  After many iterations, starch blends containing DuPont™ Bynel® resin proved to perform as well (and in some ways, better) than the incumbent PE-only structure while keeping the bag cost neutral through “downgauging”.  The result was the “Tater-Made Sustainable Bag.”  This bag is made from 25% potato waste and enables a 50% reduction in the amount of polyethylene (PE) needed.  The bag is now being used by a major U.S. retailer to package its own private-label potatoes.   The project is already exceeding expectations.  It has won numerous awards including the ‘2015 Flexible Packaging Association’s Silver Achievement Award’ in Sustainability for Plant Starch-Based films.  

To learn more about DuPont and sustainability, please visit our website at


Keywords: Environment | Awards, Ratings & Rankings | Diversity & Inclusion | DuPont | Energy | Innovation & Technology | Responsible Business & Employee Engagement

CAMPAIGN: DuPont Sustainable Innovations

CONTENT: Article