Severe supply chain disruptions and loss of business in emerging markets -- particularly in India -- due to the coronavirus pandemic have forced Unilever to rethink its operations in these markets to such an extent that it is now planning shipments based on infection rate data, training retailers on social distancing and borrowing trucks from rivals. Unilever's emerging market sales have shrunk by 1.9% during the first six months of 2020, down from 5.3% growth a year earlier, hindering an important source of revenue that has long helped the company offset a slowdown in the West.
Adequate in-store cleaning and disinfection have taken center stage during the coronavirus pandemic, with retailers and grocers taking steps to enhance their sanitation procedures in addition to deploying mobile hand-sanitizing stations, portable sinks, ultraviolet-C light disinfection systems and other tools to fight the virus and win consumer trust. Employee training is equally important for creating a clean and safe shopping environment.
The combination of the coronavirus pandemic, trade wars and industry consolidation has brought to light the importance of streamlining, strengthening and securing chemical supply chains to ensure the continuity of essential operations. BASF, for example, continuously evaluates its supply chain and production capabilities "regardless of the [COVID-19] pandemic," which helped the company gain a solid supply chain footing and the ability to meet customer needs in a flexible and reliable manner, the company said.
LyondellBasell is working on new chemical recycling technology and plans to offer more types of mechanically recycled resin, according to a sustainability report released Sept. 28. The company also plans to produce and sell 2 million metric tons of "recycled and renewable-based polymers" annually by 2030.
The Environmental Protection Agency expects to receive a complete risk evaluation request from manufacturers for some persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic substances "in the near future," at which point it will begin reviewing the materials under the Toxic Substances Control Act, says spokeswoman Molly Block. Critics have questioned the EPA's slow progress on the reviews as it was mandated to fast-track the process in 2016.
Senate lawmakers need to reach a compromise to advance the chamber's energy package and pave the way for negotiations with the House of Representatives, wrote the US Chamber of Commerce in a letter on Wednesday. The two deals offer "a potentially historic opportunity ... to enact bipartisan legislation to restore U.S. leadership in clean energy," it wrote.
Global governments should consider bisphenol-A "to have a low potential to accumulate to any appreciable extent in organisms that come into contact with it in the environment," said Steven Hentges of the American Chemistry Council in response to a report on the substance's presence on beaches. BPA is "one of the most widely studied chemicals in the world, and government scientists around the globe have found that it does not pose a health risk at typical exposure level," said Hentges.
Dow plans to save $300 million by the end of 2021 by closing a variety of manufacturing facilities. The company plans to shutter some polyurethane, specialty chemical, performance materials and coatings assets.
Pea protein powders with less sodium and low-carb flour made from sweet lupin beans are just two innovations on tap as Puris prepares to open its second processing plant in Minnesota, says CEO Tyler Lorenzen. Meanwhile, Archer Daniels Midland is expanding its plant protein portfolio and Ingredion is opening a new manufacturing plant that will produce plant protein ingredients for food and health products.
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