PSI: Unilever’s Laundry Conditioner Conserves Water

unileverBy: Tim Hill, GAIN

The Global Adaptation Institute (GAIN) is featuring a five-part series on dissecting the United Nation’s Private Sector Initiative, as well as zooming-in on private sector best practices in adaptation. Read other articles to learn more about water, food & agriculture, coastal protection and energy companies who have found business opportunities in building global resilience, HERE

Unilever, a U.N. Private Sector Initiative member and a global corporation specializing in nutrition, hygiene and personal care, commits to sustainable business and protecting the environment. Adaptation best practices have been incorporated into the company’s development plan including investing in emerging market areas. Unilever is one company that understands the need to adapt to global challenges such as population shifts, urbanization and climate change along with securing access to clean water for the world.

In recent years, Unilever launched a fabric conditioner for hand-dry laundry. The product was designed to reduce water usage during the rinse cycle by two-thirds.  The process saves an average of eight gallons of water per cycle. Furthermore, not only does this product reduce the amount of water used, it also reduces time and energy to wash the detergent from fabrics. 

If all Unilever laundry product users in Asia and South America switched to this fabric conditioner, an estimated 130 billion gallons of water would be saved annually. 


The water-saving fabric conditioner is one of many products from Unilever to help adapt to the global challenge of water scarcity.

The private sector is incrementally extending outreach and understanding of the urgent need to adapt to global challenges, but more investment is needed. Companies must look to the future and determine best practices that protect people and livelihoods as well as offer opportunities in business. Thanks to Unilever for making an impact on communities and sharing adaptation efforts on the U.N.’s Private Sector Initiative.

Visit the Private Sector Initiative on the United Nations website, or by clicking HERE. Return to throughout this week to learn more about PSI and participating organizations.