BRAND AUDIT TOOL KITMobilizing massive citizen muscle with a common mission so corporations can no longer frame the issue as one of only consumer responsibility. Join us!
First, it is important to make a waste deposit plan. Think ahead on how to properly dispose all waste from your clean-up activity. Note: this is not limited to plastics alone. For example, recyclable materials should go to material recovery and/or recycling facilities, and biodegradable wastes could be set aside for composting. Waste that cannot be recycled or composted (i.e residual waste) are typically used for the brand audit, hint: these are the brands we want to identify!
In any clean-up activity, it is important to have the proper gear to protect yourself and your volunteers. At the minimum, make sure that you provide protective gloves or tongs that could be used by participants in picking up trash or handling the waste.
After you have identified the location of your clean-up, specify and measure the size of the designated clean-up area. The size of the area should be relative to the number of volunteers or participants. Take before and after photos of the site and share them with our community by tagging the location and #breakfreefromplastic!
If you have enough time (one full day for the clean-up), we suggest collecting all types of waste in your designated clean-up site, not just plastics. This process is called a waste audit and takes place prior to the brand audit. A waste audit identifies and quantifies the different components of the waste stream (e.g., organics, recyclable plastics, paper, metals, glass, hazardous waste, residual waste) in a comprehensive manner. We can utilize this information to understand how much plastic is found in the waste stream compared to other sources. View and Download the Waste Audit Methodology and forms below:
No time to conduct a waste audit? No problem! Clean up all the waste in your designated site and separate the plastics from the rest. Now you are ready to audit the brands with the plastic waste collected. Categorize the items by brand as you collect them. Unidentifiable brands can be classified according to package type, which provides insight about problematic materials.
- Record the name of the brand. (Hint: This will be the most visible word printed on the item!
- Record the manufacturer of that brand. (Hint: This will be in smaller print in a less obvious place.) Large manufacturers like Unilever, Nestle, and Procter & Gamble each have hundreds of brands. A quick online search should reveal the manufacturer of your plastic item, if you have trouble finding it on the label.
- Fill in the rest of the information specified in the form.
Check out the screenshot of the form
Let’s get social! Take photos of the piles of plastic from each manufacturer and post it to social media. Tag the manufacturer and don’t forget to use the hashtag #breakfreefromplastic!
Clean the audit area carefully and properly, remembering to leave the site cleaner than before you started.
If you have the resources to do so, box up the branded items and send it back to the manufacturer. Include a letter to the company describing the purpose of your brand audit and urge them to #breakfreefromplastic!
Done with your Brand Audit?
Send us your data.
What Are We Doing With This Data?
Find out which companies are responsible for most of the plastic waste collected around the globe!
- Green Groups Reveal Top Plastic Polluters Following Massive Beach Cleanup on Freedom Island BFFP press release
- Our Beaches Are Branded With Plastic Pollution HuffPost
- DENR leads massive coastal cleanup nationwide Business Mirror
- Nestlé, Unilever vow to explore alternatives to plastic packaging GMA News Online