LG Electronics USA in January will launch Proactive Customer Care, an artificial intelligence-infused solution designed to improve customer service and satisfaction by alerting owners of select Wi-Fi-enabled LG home appliances about potential issues before they occur. "It allows LG to leverage operating information from appliances to not only detect potential and existing issues but also reach out to the customer as it happens or before it happens," said Hwan Hur, the company's vice president of customer care.
Cosmetics manufacturers shouldn't go fragrance-free because fragrances enhance product appeal and enjoyment, and are rarely responsible for contact allergies, according to professor Torsten Zuberbier, a medical doctor and allergist. "Even allergens which can cause allergies at a higher concentration, like isoeugenol, may be used in cosmetics if they're used at a low threshold concentration," said Zuberbier, noting that natural ingredients actually have higher allergenic potential.
Science can be a weapon in the fight against consumer misconceptions and confusion about product safety, according to Bertrand Chuberre of L'Oréal Active Cosmetics. "To face perception, you need facts" because "what people perceive is not necessarily fact," Chuberre said.
Canada-based Plastic Bank is on a mission to clean up the planet and alleviate poverty by turning plastic waste into a currency people in impoverished communities can use to buy goods or services. People in Haiti who work full-time to collect plastic for the Plastic Bank now live an average of 63% above the poverty line, thanks to this model.
Designing the e-commerce-exclusive Tide Eco-Box challenged Procter & Gamble to innovate while keeping in mind key packaging principles as well as brand message communication, P&G's Joe Bohache said at the recent E-Pack Summit US in Seattle, Wash. Sustainability and recyclability also were important considerations in the design process, which resulted in a bag-in-box product that uses 60% less plastic, 30% less water and washes the same 96 loads of laundry despite being lighter than the standard Tide bottle.
The Trump administration has released an agenda that shows it will continue its push for deregulation in 2020, with plans to release its final New Source Review rule in March, finalize its Waters of the US repeal in January and regulate per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances under the Safe Drinking Water Act. "By creating a climate of regulatory certainty, we're able to breathe new life into local economies around the country," said Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee has advanced a package containing 11 bills that would increase the Environmental Protection Agency's oversight and monitoring of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances. If the package is approved, the EPA would have to set limits for PFAS in drinking water, include the substances in the Superfund law and develop new regulations for the testing, disposal, clean up and production of PFAS.
The Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday overhauled rules for chemical storage facilities, partially repealing requirements that directed companies to make data on hazardous substances public and also easing safety assessments, in a bid to save companies $88 million and bolster national security. "Accident prevention is a top priority of the EPA and this rule promotes improved coordination between chemical facilities and emergency responders, reduces unnecessary regulatory burdens, and addresses security risks," said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler.
Sustainability and corporate responsibility are focuses for Dow Chemical, 3M DuPont and every other major company, but challenges remain as they struggle to identify the best areas for improvement and build public trust. "Trade associations can be very helpful in trying to think through what best practices are, what companies can do to get better," said Tim Fort of Indiana University.
Cabot will eliminate 67 jobs at its facility in Alpharetta, Ga., beginning on Jan. 17. "These planned actions are intended to make Cabot more efficient and effective as an organization," said the company.
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