Fiber Sourcing

In 2012, we reached our Sustainability 2015 goal of sourcing 100% of our virgin wood fiber from suppliers whose forestry operations or wood-fiber procurement activities are certified by a third-party forest certification system.

The third-party certification systems we recognize are:

  • Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)
  • Sustainable Forest Initiative (SFI)
  • Canadian Standards Association's (CSA) National Sustainable Forest Management Standards (CSA)
  • Sistema Brasileiro de Certificação Florestal (CERFLOR), in Brazil
  • Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes (PEFC)

Our Commitment to Environmentally Preferred Fiber

We continue to have a strong preference for the use of environmentally preferred fiber. Kimberly-Clark has set a goal that by the year 2025, 90% of the fiber supply for our global tissue products will be environmentally preferred Fiber, consisting of the following sources: Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified fiber; recycled fiber (RF); and sustainable alternative fiber. FSC has the world's most widely recognized forest certification scheme, supported by internationally recognized environmental nongovernmental organizations (ENGOs) and preferred by a number of retail customers and business-to-business partners. At K-C, we look to support our suppliers by working with partners such as FSC International, Greenpeace and the World Wildlife Fund's (WWF) Global Forest & Trade Network (GF&TN) to standardize FSC requirements.

The FSC administers three different types of certificates.

Environmentally Preferable Tissue (Global) 2010 2011 2012 2013
Virgin Fiber
FSC Mix 33.3% 38.5% 44.3% 50.3%
FSC Plantation 29.1% 33.1% 38.4% 41.8%
FSC Controlled Wood 31.4% 26.1% 21.8% 16.5%
Recycled Fiber
Recycled content 32.0% 34.5% 33.9% 33.2%
Post-consumer recycled content* 12.9% 14.1% 13.8% 13.7%
Environmentally Preferred Fiber Use in Global Tissue Products 2010 2011 2012 2013
Virgin Fiber
FSC Mix 31.6% 36.7% 44.0% 50.7%
FSC Plantation 25.9% 30.0% 34.4% 38.0%
FSC Controlled Wood 42.7% 36.4% 26.5% 21.3%
Recycled Fiber
Recycled content 25.2% 26.0% 29.5% 28.0%
Post-consumer recycled content* 20.3 22.5% 25.6% 22.9%

All Kimberly-Clark tissue mills in North America and Europe and approximately 50% of our mills in our other regions are Chain of Custody-certified. In 2013, we obtained FSC Chain of Custody certification for facilities in Malaysia, Hong Kong, Thailand and Singapore.

Our goal, under our GF&TN agreement with WWF, is to achieve 100% Chain of Custody certification for all of our mills by 2016. Pulp suppliers must be Forest Management-certified in order to supply us with FSC-certified pulp for our FSC product-labeling initiatives.

Sourcing Timeline

"In 2013, Kimberly-Clark importantly launched Viva paper towels with bamboo fiber and began to promote Forest Stewardship Council certification on product packaging, a key step that could still be more aggressively communicated. In addition, in 2013, global GHG emissions at manufacturing facilities were 3% less than 2012. Although this was better than their goal, I believe there is room for the company to set much more aggressive greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals."
— Jeffrey Hollender
    Sustainability Advisory Board Member

FSC-Certification Achievements in 2013

The number of our products that are FSC-certified continued to grow in 2013 as part of our continued commitment to raise customer awareness of environmentally sound fiber sourcing. Particular achievements include the introduction of K-C Professional products in Southeast Asia and the introduction of FSC-certified Viva brand paper towels with bamboo at Costco stores in Australia.

In North America Consumer Tissue, we expanded FSC product certification to include Cottonelle brand and Scott brand extra soft bath tissue. This is in addition to FSC product labeling completed previously on Kleenex brand facial tissue and Scott 1000 bath tissue and Scott towels. Moreover, K-C has worked to further our achievements in FSC-certification through strong partnerships that allow us to deepen our reach and drive consumer education.

World Wildlife Fund's (WWF) Love Your Forests Campaign

Since 2011, Kimberly-Clark has been a foundation partner of WWF's Love Your Forests campaign, which aims to raise awareness of FSC® as the certification of choice, and the importance of sourcing tissue, paper and timber products from responsibly-managed forests.

The program is helping WWF to spread two key messages:

  • We can all love our forests by making informed choices and choosing products certified by the FSC; and
  • Making informed choices can make a difference in the marketplace as the more consumers demand FSC certified products, the more businesses will need to supply them.

In 2013, we continued our support of the program by ensuring that all our Australian manufactured FSC-certified consumer tissue and towel products have packaging clearly labeled with information about FSC and the Love Your Forests program. The Love Your Forests campaign gives K-C the opportunity to encourage people and businesses to look for the FSC registered trademark when buying wood based products and educate them on how their purchasing decisions have an impact on the environment. We are proud to report that through the program, awareness of the FSC logo has grown in Australia, allowing K-C to differentiate our products by highlighting our commitment to environmentally friendly practices.

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