Clean Home. Clean Planet. Clean Future.

We’re reimagining the future of cleaning and it starts with reinventing a century-old history of chemistry.

Billions of people around the world are asking for products that are tough on germs and stains, and ever more convenient to use. But now, people also want these products to be kinder to the planet.

The science and technology now exist to make this possible.

The best of both worlds

For generations, we’ve helped remove the dirt and stains that are all part of people living healthier, more enjoyable lives.

While our efforts to reduce the environmental impact of our products have been considerable and sometimes ground-breaking, we know we need to do more. On an even bigger scale. Quickly.

This starts with the ingredients we use. These are responsible for the biggest share of greenhouse gas emissions across the lifecycle of our Home Care brands.

So, we’ve come up with a new strategy: Clean Future.

This is how we will transform some of the most popular cleaning and laundry brands in the world to become lower carbon and lower waste, with the same or even better performance.

We will use renewable or recycled carbon sources above the ground to end our dependence on non-replaceable fossil fuels from under the ground.

That, combined with embracing exciting advances in low-carbon chemistry, means we can play our part in the fight against climate change and help to preserve, restore and regenerate the earth’s natural resources.

The innovation behind the revolution

From what goes into our cleaning and laundry products to the way we package them, we’re changing it all.

Through Clean Future, we aim to replace 100% of the carbon derived from fossil fuels in our Home Care formulations with renewable or recycled carbon by 2030. But that’s not all. Across Unilever, we’ve already committed to:

  • Achieving a deforestation-free supply chain by 2023.
  • Ensuring net zero carbon emissions from all our products, from cradle to shelf, by 2039.
  • Halving the greenhouse gas impact of our products across their lifecycle by 2030.
  • Aiming to make our product formulations biodegradable by 2030.
  • Halving our use of virgin plastic packaging, helping to collect and process more plastic packaging than we sell, ensuring all our plastic packaging is reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025, and using at least 25% recycled plastic in our packaging, also by 2025.

Clean Future is how we are fundamentally changing the way that some of the world’s most well-known cleaning and laundry products are created, manufactured and packaged.

Peter ter Kulve - President, Home Care

What might the future of cleaning look like?

Here we imagine some of the possibilities that could, one day, become reality.

  • Powered by waste

    Powered by waste

    Many brands make their packaging from recycled plastic. But what about making the ingredients from waste too? A product with the same great performance, but with fewer, more powerful ingredients. Many of which are from recycled sources. All of which are biodegradable. And bottles that are unique. It might be going a bit far to suggest these will become collectable, but they are ‘beautifully ugly’, so you never know.

  • Small is beautiful

    Small is better

    Imagine a laundry capsule that’s so ultra-concentrated it can be made super small but still pack a mighty punch. With fewer chemicals, it would be lower carbon and therefore better for the environment. Being more compact and lighter means less CO2 emitted and less packaging needed to transport it from factory to store to home. And all the ingredients are 100% biodegradable of course.

  • Self cleaning toilet

    A self-cleaning toilet?

    Cleaning toilets properly is important, but probably not a job that most people look forward to. So we thought… how about a toilet that does it for you? Technology could give us a product with a coating that’s resistant to germs and stains, so the treated surfaces continue to clean themselves. That means greater convenience because you need to clean less often. It also means longer-lasting protection, made possible by natural ingredients. And a refillable pack means less plastic waste.

  • Making smart washing machines cleaner

    The perfect combination

    Washing machines – like lots of home appliances – are getting smart. But what if they could be even smarter? For instance, a high-tech dispensing system which contains all the detergent ingredients, then mixes them in exactly the right way for the fabrics and stains in that particular load of laundry. A built-in microfibre filter captures particles from entering the environment. And when empty, the cartridges can be returned to be cleaned, refilled and reused. Truly circular by design.

Clean Future Supplier Awards 2021

Our Clean Future Awards recognise our supply partners who have made the biggest contribution to our Clean Future agenda. They consist of the ‘Brilliance Award’ winners and one overall ‘Excellence Award’, recognising the outstanding work that meets all three parts of our strategy – superior, sustainable, affordable.

  • Excellence award

    Excellence Award

    This year's top award, the Clean Future Excellence Award, goes to the fragrance house MANE who have raised the bar for the fragrance industry with a winning biodegradable, renewable fragrance.

  • Brilliance award

    Brilliance Award #1

    KLK are recognised for building a verifiable and traceable no deforestation, no peat conversion and exploitation free palm oil supply for the production of their surfactants – a key cleaning ingredient.

  • Brilliance award

    Brilliance Award #2

    Croda are recognised for pioneering the next generation of polymers – a key ingredient in modern cleaning products – and making them biodegradable and from renewable sources while delivering new care benefits.

  • Brilliance award

    Brilliance Award #3

    University of Liverpool and University of Oxford are recognised for coming together to unlock new areas of materials science such as breakthrough catalysts to convert CO2 into chemicals. It’s truly state of the art science, which shows our Carbon Rainbow model in action.

Back to top

Connect with us

We're always looking to connect with those who share an interest in a sustainable future.

Contact us

Get in touch with Unilever and specialist teams in our headquarters, or find contacts around the world.

Contact us