Sustainable Chemistry Implementation Guide Section 2: Transparency

Published on January 28, 2021 and last updated on January 28, 2021

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1. Disclose full product formulations to UL through WERCSmart

Description

Proprietary product formulations provided through the WERCSmart system (managed by UL) will remain confidential from Walmart.

In October 2017, UL’s WERCSmart system changed its terms of use and licensing and introduced four Data Use Tiers to give retailers an opportunity to request additional information from their supplier.1 All Walmart suppliers for in-scope formulated, consumable products were encouraged to grant Walmart permission to access Tier 2.1 and 2.2 data. Additionally, Walmart encouraged in-scope Private Brand suppliers to grant permission to Tier 4.2.

  • Read More About Tier Permissions
    Tier 2.1 and tier 2.2 permissions
    Encouraged of all in-scope suppliers, Tier 2.1 authorizes UL to use confidential supplier data to provide WMT with reports on chemical usage and prevalence in formulated products.
    Encouraged of all in-scope suppliers, Tier 2.2 authorizes UL to provide WMT with the chemical identities of publicly disclosed ingredients in a product and a product’s transparency ratios.
    Tier 4.2 permissions
    Encouraged of private brands suppliers, Tier 4.2 authorizes Walmart to publish a product’s disclosed ingredient list online.

    The change in UL’s WERCSmart terms of use and licensing, and Walmart’s request to suppliers to grant permission to Tier 2.1 and 2.2, will allow Walmart to more accurately report progress on a product’s Transparency Score.

Measurement

  • Percentage of suppliers, products (by UPC), and weight of products (by sales volume) which have granted consent for Tier 2.1 data uses
  • Percentage of products (by number of UPC) with at least 50% of the ingredient identities in a product disclosed with associated specific chemical IDs (e.g. CAS numbers)
  • Percentage of products (by number of UPC) with 100% of the ingredient identities in a product disclosed with associated specific chemical IDs (e.g. CAS numbers)

To generate these data points, Walmart shares internal inventory data from Retail Link to UL. UL combines the Retail Link data with formulation data submitted by all our suppliers (for compliance purposes) into its WERCSmart system.

  • Read More About Measuring Formulation Disclosure
    Based on the new Data Tier agreements, we now have more visibility into the type of information being shared with UL. This is a positive move to more accurately measure whether suppliers are providing full ingredient disclosure within UL’s WERCSmart system. We previously reported higher percentages of suppliers providing the WERCSmart system with full ingredient disclosure because we did not have this improved level of visibility. Walmart will continue to encourage suppliers to provide full disclosure of their ingredient formulations.

    The 2018-year results included in the tables below combine in-scope Walmart Retail Link data sales collected in January 2019 (sales data from January 1st 2018 through December 31st 2018) and submitted formulation data from in-scope suppliers to the WERCSmart system as of Oct. 21, 2019.

    Data Team Permissions
    Transparency by Supplier Charts
    Transparency by UPC Charts
    Transparency by Sales Volume Charts

    Transparency Scores
    Transparency Scores 50% Charts
    Transparency Scores 100% Charts

2. Disclose all ingredients online by product beginning January 2015. Specifically, for household cleaning products, disclose information required to be disclosed under California’s Cleaning Product Right to Know Act of 2017 on-pack2

Description

Walmart aims to create more transparency about ingredients contained in the products on its shelves by encouraging all suppliers to provide full online ingredient disclosure beginning January 2015 and, specifically for household cleaning products, disclosing information required to be disclosed under the Cleaning Product Right to Know Act of 2017. Walmart encourages online public disclosure to be accessible from the supplier's website and to be displayed at the per- product level.3

  • For online disclosure content, Walmart encourages suppliers to consult leading guides on public ingredient disclosure. Walmart recommends that suppliers, at a minimum, utilize the recognized elements of public ingredient disclosure provided by the US EPA.
  • For on-pack disclosure content, Walmart encourages suppliers to list ingredient information. Walmart recommends that suppliers, at a minimum, utilize the California’s Cleaning Product Right to Know Act of 2017.

1 UL’s WERCSmart® Terms of Use, including the Data Use Tier Disclosure, are available here.
2 Walmart recognizes that disclosure on many consumable products is required by law. Walmart is encouraging those not required by law to disclose on-pack to provide disclosures.
3 Public Disclosure for Walmart's Private Brands will be available on Walmart.com.