Search this website. You can use fund codes to locate specific funds

Investor expectations for global plastics challenges

EOS publishes new Investor Expectations for Global Plastics Challenges

Fast reading

  • Companies reliant on the take-make-waste model will face substantial commercial risks in coming years

  • In 2020 and beyond, we are amplifying our engagement in the chemicals, consumer goods and retail sectors

  • Our report concludes with a series of questions that investors can put to companies

Investors are concerned that a failure to account for the negative impacts of plastic has resulted in numerous interlinked challenges – from acute environmental pollution and potential human health impacts, to substantial greenhouse gas emissions across plastics value chains. We believe that the linear, take-make-waste model for plastics has become unacceptable and companies reliant on this model will face substantial new commercial risks in coming years.

We expect companies to move from treating plastic as an externalised risk, to developing strategies that consider it as a resource requiring responsible management and value preservation – in partnership with suppliers, customers, processors and regulators.

Our engagement activity focuses on businesses engaged in the manufacturing of chemicals for plastics, and the design, marketing and retailing of consumer goods. In 2020 and beyond, we are amplifying our engagement in the chemicals, consumer goods and retail sectors by setting objectives for high-risk companies and targeting outcomes that address opportunities and risks.

We take a bespoke approach to each company exposed to plastics value chains, which takes the maturity of the company into account. Our approach considers all the elements relating to a sustainable plastics strategy, including the management, governance and disclosure.

For each sector in this report, we believe companies should be on a journey of change. This report concludes with a series of questions that investors can ask companies at each point on this journey. Without a cogent, disclosed journey on the sustainability of plastics and packaging, we believe many companies will face significant scrutiny from investors and stakeholders.

Related Insights

Pandemic scrutiny brings purpose to the fore
Government support for companies during the Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated why all businesses need to maintain a social licence to operate underpinned by a corporate purpose.
Alphabet case study
Alphabet has published a set of principles to promote the responsible use of AI, followed by white papers, case studies, fairness indicators, and ethical dashboards and tool suites for enterprises and developers that use its technologies for building their own AI systems.
Tesco case study
Tesco has made substantial improvements to its processes for risk management and internal controls, as well as to employee incentives and supplier practices, following an accounting scandal in 2014.
Q and A: Diversity and inclusion challenges in France
How can French companies address inequities related to the racial or ethnic origins of employees?
Limited shelf life? Why the fast fashion model is under strain
The fast fashion industry has a detrimental impact on the environment, but more people switched to online retailers when pandemic lockdowns shuttered high street stores.
Our debt to nature
For the most part, companies have taken the immense value of nature for granted, but global ecosystems are now threatened at unprecedented levels.

EOS Client Service and Business Development

Amy D’Eugenio,
Head of Client Service and Business Development, EOS