Meet the new board member: Jenny Wassenaar from Trivium Packaging

Trivium Packaging “Trivium” is a global leader in metal packaging, serving some of the world’s most recognizable brands. They offer customers around the world innovative and sustainable packaging solutions supported by scalable global production and outstanding customer service. At Trivium, they incorporate climate actions across their three foundational pillars representing the name Trivium which is Latin and stands for “The three roads coming together”: Customer, Planet, and People.

Jenny Wassenaar, the new board member of Global Compact Network Netherlands, is the Chief Sustainability Officer at Trivium Packaging.

Trivium and their sustainability journey

The Sustainable Development Goals are a part of Trivium’s DNA. Becoming the “circularity champion” is how they defined their sustainability strategy with the ultimate goal to become the partner of choice for quality and sustainable packaging. Being a circularity champion means pioneering change and engaging in stakeholder collaborations that protect, promote and preserve resources. Simply put, it enables them to contribute to a circular economy and act as a force for good.

Jenny Wassenaar

Jenny Wassenaar

Chief Sustainability Officer, Trivium Packaging

“The world needs packaging. Products we buy need protection, foods we consume need preserving, and brands we love need to find ways to stand out on crowded shelves. Yet, our desire for safety, convenience and differentiation should not come at the expense of future generations and their ability to sustain themselves. I fundamentally believe that quality packaging does not have to be at odds with the planet— and with our teams at Trivium, we work hard to demonstrate that every single day. For the sake of our customers, our planet, and our people.”

Underlying the circularity champion are three pillars that cover their value chain. Within each pillar, they have set ambitious targets that they aim to achieve by 2030. For example, they closely monitor their energy consumption and emissions, maximise their recycling rates, optimise the use of secondary packaging materials, manage waste appropriately, and limit water usage.

Trivium joined the UN Global Compact in 2021. They committed to the Ten Principles and focus on 8 of the SDGs: 4- Quality Education; 5- Gender Equality; 6- Clean Water and Sanitation; 8- Decent Work and Economic Growth; 9- Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure; 12- Responsible Consumption and Production; 13- Climate Action; and 17- Partnership for the Goals. Wassenaar believes that by joining the UN Global Compact, they can scale their sustainable development globally and seek to learn and contribute to the international network and vast resources available to organisations.

Wassenaar thinks it is ambitious to commit to 8 goals. However, by combining the circularity in their materials and in the actions they take as an organisation they strive to uphold all of these commitments. Trivium makes the most impact with SDGs 9, 12, and 13.

Along with changing activities in the workplace, Trivium also creates knowledge documents that are freely available to their customers.

In their annual survey of consumer perceptions of sustainability in packaging called “Global Buying Green Report”, Trivium along with the Boston Consulting Group, interviewed more than 15,000 end consumers across Europe, North America, and South America

“We aspire towards a fully circular economy, where materials are kept in endless loops of use and reuse. By sharing timely insights that can help customers and end consumers make more informed sustainable purchasing choices, we take a further step toward true circularity. “

and explores their values and behaviours with respect to both sustainability and packaging. The survey reveals insights on consumer willingness to pay for eco-friendly packaging and consumers’ perceptions of packaging materials.

Wassenaar’s goals for the future are to do more on SDGs 17-Partnership for the Goals and 5- Gender Equality. By joining the UN Global Compact, they can expand their network and become more active in working beyond their industry. For Gender Equality, Trivium Packing seeks to create a “true balance between men and women in production locations.” This is still a challenge as more men than women are working on the production line, which is why they have created an Inclusion and Diversity working group, giving employees the ability to provide guidance on what they can do differently in the future.

Wassenaar’s Personal Sustainability Journey

Wassenaar strives to follow all the SDGs in her personal life. With four children, she makes sure to raise them with sustainability in mind. Recently, the family has turned vegetarian in an effort to consume less meat and be aware of their carbon footprint. The family collectively buys second-hand, whether that be clothing or furniture.

Moreover, Wassenaar and her family have taken in Ukrainian refugees. They all understand that they cannot solve all the problems in the world, but they can take small steps every day to make changes and adjustments that contribute to social issues and sustainability.

“Be courageous and be kind”

Wassenaar says: “My advice is always to be courageous and be kind. If you see something that you want to change, then take action: speak up and stand up. However, always look beyond your own needs as your decisions also influence others.”

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