Rewarding Consumers for Recycling Packaging: Kimberly-Clark Seeks Shared Value
by Sara L. Beckman, Stefanie Robinson, and Seren Pendleton-Knoll
This case describes how Kimberly-Clark is working to encourage consumer recycling of flexible plastic film packaging, which is wrapped around many of its products, including paper towels, toilet paper, and more. An infrastructure already exists for consumers to return this film to retail stores for recycling, but estimated return rates remain low. Furthermore, Kimberly-Clark is not directly involved in the recycling transaction; retail stores collect the packaging and sell it to recycling companies. Kimberly-Clark is considering developing a consumer rewards program to incentivize store return of the packaging. Funding such a program will likely require Kimberly-Clark to identify new sources of value throughout the film-packaging lifecycle.
1) To understand the considerations a consumer-packaged goods company must make when attempting to increase consumer recycling of product packaging. 2) To examine the relationship between recycling and consumer rewards and the conditions under which a rewards program does or doesn't work. 3) To illustrate some of the issues a company faces as it attempts to influence a broader system that includes consumers, retailers, and recycling companies.
Pub Date: Dec 31, 2016
Revision Date: Jan 1, 2019
Discipline: Social Enterprise
Subjects: Corporate social entrepreneurship, Recycling, Social issues, Consumer behavior, Packaging, Brand equity, Partnerships, Value creation, Sustainability, Supply chain management
Berkeley Haas Case SeriesFollowThe Berkeley Haas Case Series is a collection of business case studies written by faculty members at the Haas School of Business. Cases are conceived, developed, written, and published throughout the year, on subjects ranging from entrepreneurship and strategy to finance and marketing. Each case includes a teaching note for use in the classroom.