Nudging for Good » Case Studies » Awards Finalists 2019 » Pampers is giving diapers a new life

Pampers is giving diapers a new life


1. What is the observed insight?

Today parents have no choice but to throw their baby’s’ diaper waste into the normal “household bin” because there is no solution to collect disposable diapers for recycling. This waste has become very visible to them because many other waste items get separated for recycling (glass, paper, packaging), and parents change their baby 4 to 5 times a day, creating lots of waste.


2. The Nudge

FaterSmart, a JV of P&G and Angelini in Italy, developed a unique diaper recycling technology. It is already live in Italy, and we are now expanding to more countries. In Amsterdam we started the project by first learning how to collect used diapers. For this we have installed 12 smart bins in three neighbourhoods of Amsterdam and launched a recycling app that gives consumers access to the programme. Smart bins are placed in high frequency areas (e.g. in front of a drug store) and day care centres to better target our audience. Consumers can participate by downloading the app, locating a bin closest to them and generate a unique code to unlock the bins and deposit their diapers. To encourage the desired behaviour and to keep them engaged in the programme, consumers are rewarded. They see their contribution to the environment via a tangible impact page (your recycled diapers are equivalent of X chairs, X papers, etc.) and via milestones and thank you cards (e.g. you came 4th time, it is a habit). They can also get a discount for their next Pampers diaper purchase after having dropped diapers for four times.

We know that majority of the population is “feel gooders”, who participate in the programme when they see others doing it. For this reason, we have added the neighbourhood impact in our app so that they can feel part of the movement (your neighbors recycled in total X diaper, equivalent of X chairs/ X papers). Second, as of August, we have integrated this technique into our communication platforms (instore, digital) with a message of “your neighborhood already collected X diapers for recycling, join the programme and start recycling your diapers too”. By showing how many other people are doing the right thing, we encourage others to join. We also partner with drug stores and daycare centers which put the bin in front of/next to their buildings, interact with citizens to encourage them to join the programme and create a movement together.


3. Evidence path

Since January 2019 we had more than 400 families that registered and tried the programme. In total, over 100.000 diapers have been collected that could generate 4.500 kg of high value secondary raw materials. Most respondents (78%) recycle diapers either once or twice per week and 92% rate the programme positive to very positive.