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February 28, 2020

Orange is the New Green

Zoetis colleagues implement sustainable shipments to customers

Zoetis Implements Sustainable Shipments to Customers

To champion a more sustainable future for animal health, Zoetis is implementing environmentally friendly packaging and reimagining the distribution of vaccines and other cold-chain products in certain markets. Read on to learn more about these initiatives in different geographies. 

A Cool Approach to Packaging

In the U.S., the GMS Logistics and Quality teams recently transitioned its high-volume Styrofoam coolers used for transporting vaccines (which require stable temperatures to maintain potency) to fully recyclable shipping coolers. The new cardboard cooler includes an insulated cellulose lining and ice packs to maintain the required temperature as products travel from a Zoetis warehouse to customer clinics. Upon receiving their shipment, customers can easily reuse or recycle the materials. The new “cold-chain” solution comes after eight-plus months of research and testing to find the most efficient packaging that would maintain the product at the required temperature for the duration of the shipment.  

“Zoetis is committed to using the world’s resources wisely and to growing our business in a way that is considerate of the global community,” said Ed DuBeau, Vice President, U.S. Customer Care. “We are always looking to improve our overall impact on global sustainability. The potential impact is significant," he added. Every year, these coolers are expected to save 1-3

  • 72,000 gallons of fuel (which requires almost 6,000 barrels of crude oil to manufacture!)
  • 750,000 ft.3 of landfill space (an entire football field stacked 12+ boxes high!)
  • 1.6 million lbs. of carbon emissions (the equivalent 330,000-plus passenger cars driven for a year!) 

The Indianapolis Distribution Center began shipping the first fully recyclable containers to U.S. customers on February 17th, with full deployment at all U.S. Distribution centers to follow by the end of April. 

The project was initially piloted in Canada in 2017 and reflects our continued commitment to both our customers and the environment, says Eugenio Rodriguez, GMS Logistics Operations Lead in Kirkland. “We took initiative to maintain compliance with Canada’s regulatory requirements. By developing a two-part solution, we have the flexibility of a single-use recyclable container for one-day shipping or a multi-use ‘cryo-cube’ cooler for two-day shipments. Both are designed to be re-usable.” 

Thinking “Out of the Box” in Emerging Markets

Cold-chain distribution is especially challenging in emerging markets like Sub-Saharan Africa, where shipments to a specific farm are less likely to arrive in good condition. A Zoetis team in Africa turned a remote possibility into a reality by equipping scooters with cooler boxes, ensuring the quality and reliability of cold-chain products like vaccines. Drees Beekman, Senior Vice President, Benelux, Africa and Middle-East Cluster, explains that combining cold-chain distribution with vaccine training for local farmers is helping these customers achieve better results in protecting their animals. “To make a meaningful difference in animal health for developing countries, Zoetis is doing more than registering products locally and getting them imported. I am proud of our team in Sub-Saharan Africa for running it like they own it.” 

Sustainability at Zoetis

Zoetis is always looking to improve its overall impact on global sustainability. To learn more about the company’s environment, health and safety measures, visit the Environmental Sustainability page on Zoetis.com.


  1. Zoetis GMS shipping data
  2. 2018 Annual Fleet Study,” North American Council for Freight Efficiency
  3. United States Environmental Protection Agency greenhouse gas equivalencies calculator

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