Holland & Barrett becomes first UK retailer to ban wet-wipes

Holland & Barrett becomes first UK retailer to ban wet-wipes, Pegasus / Holland & Barrett
According to EarthWatch Institute , 9.3million wet-wipes are flushed down toilets every day, making their way to oceans, rivers and sewers, damaging marine life and creating huge costs for consumers. In the UK, wet-wipes are blamed for 80% of blockages, costing an estimated £100million a year.

In May 2019, Holland & Barrett became the first high-street retailer to announce a complete ban on wet-wipes from all UK and Ireland stores.

Alongside blanket coverage in print, digital and broadcast media, the integrated campaign spanned PR, influential-ambassadors, stakeholder engagement, digital marketing, video, CSR, issues management and new product development.

The announcement launched in partnership with Plastic Oceans, and across launch weekend alone reached 943 million people.

Launch day kicked off with a seven-minute debate on Sky Sunrise, later cascading to This Morning, BBC radio, LBC, Sky News, and to newspapers including The Guardian, The Telegraph, Mail Online and The Times, as well as trade and consumer, from Retail Week to Vogue - all with 100% positive sentiment.

A hero campaign video became one of the most viewed videos from a UK brand in 2019, achieving 92% higher than the average engagement rate.

The campaign drew public support from key stakeholders, Thames Water, who showcased their support via a series of tweets, reposting the brand’s announcement video.

Following the initial announcement, the social movement #ConsciousBeauty launched, which highlighted the damage wipes cause, whilst driving a new era of H&B shoppers to new and sustainable wipe alternatives launching in-stores nationwide.