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Kimberly-Clark Wipes Away Its Eco Guilt With Recycled Toilet Paper

We’ve covered the destructive practices of tissue and toilet paper companies extensively–specifically, the destructive habits of bathroom tissue giant Kimberly-Clark.

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We’ve covered the destructive practices of tissue and toilet paper companies extensively–specifically, the destructive habits of bathroom tissue giant Kimberly-Clark. But now the company, often criticized for using virgin fiber from 200-year-old trees, has offered an olive branch to the environmental community with a line of recycled products.

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Scott Naturals is the company’s new line of toilet paper, towels, and napkins made from a mix of recycled and virgin fiber. The toilet paper contains 40% recycled material, the towels contain 60%, and the napkins have 80% recycled fiber. Kimberly-Clark Professional already offers 100% recycled fiber products, but this is the company’s first recycled home line in North America.

So why not just use all recycled materials? Kimberly-Clark says that “The lower quality and higher price perceptions of products containing recycled fiber has limited consumer acceptance.” Presumably, then, using a hybrid of recycled and virgin materials is cheaper than using only recycled fiber.

Kimberly-Clark’s move into recyclables is significant for a company that has entire Web sites devoted to its resource mismanagement. But it’s hard to understand why the company won’t make the jump into using 100% recycled materials. As we have repeatedly pointed out, soft and fluffy recycled tissue is possible. Even if the price point for recycled tissue is higher than for virgin tissue, surely a company as large as Kimberly-Clark could benefit from appeasing the growing market of eco-conscious consumers with pricey yet soft products. Still, the company deserves a pat on the bum for finally getting its ass in line.

[Via Kimberly-Clark]

About the author

Ariel Schwartz is a Senior Editor at Co.Exist. She has contributed to SF Weekly, Popular Science, Inhabitat, Greenbiz, NBC Bay Area, GOOD Magazine and more

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