to make the NatureWorks and Ingeo brand names as ubiquitous as Intel's famous "Intel Inside" logo. Labels with the NatureWorks logo and information such as "Container Made From Corn!" are appearing on plastic cups, salad bags, juice bottles and produce containers (to name a few) from companies such as Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Newman's Own Organics, Wild Oats and Noble Juice (to name a few more). And hang-tags with the NatureWorks and Ingeo logos are looping out of the sleeves of numerous fashion brands.
"Most people don't realize plastic comes from oil or that polyester and nylon are petroleum-based," says Brand Manager David Stanton. "We want to make sure consumers are aware of the pedigree of what they're buying and that we're offering bio-based options."
But what's a bio-based plastic, exactly? Owned by Minnesota-based food-processing company Cargill Inc., NatureWorks says it uses corn sugar to create a polylactide polymer that can be used to make plastic packaging, lap-top housing, bedding, clothing, diapers and feminine hygiene products, among other things. The company claims its manufacturing process uses 68% less fossil fuel resources than petroleum-based plastics, and that the end products are more easily disposable than traditional plastics and fabrics such as nylon and polyester.
The worldwide marketing program begins on Earth Day this Sunday, ends on World Environment Day June 5 and includes product launches, in-store promotions and event sponsorships. Among the new products launched this spring: Green Mountain Coffee Roasters is using disposable cups lined with NatureWorks polymer; numerous fashion designers are coming out with everything from T-shirts to fashion separates, jeans, sportswear and socks. Home Depot stores in Chicago and Los Angeles are offering WeedBlock Natural, a weed control product made from Ingeo fibers; and Mercury, Ennerev and Pacific Coast Feather Company are promoting sustainable bedding products.
Throughout the spring, NatureWorks is sponsoring numerous events, such as Hofstra University's "Defining Culture Through Dress" conference; a fashion show at The Launch Pad in New York; an event at Brooklyn Industries' store in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan; and the 2007 LOHAS 11 Forum in Marina del Rey, CA. Fittingly, LOHAS stands for Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability.
Editor's note: This is the fourth in a series of articles that focus on the environment and green marketing this week, which leads to Earth Day on Sunday.