Areas of Innovation

Unilever is recognised as a world leader in R&D, both in terms of innovation (new products and mixes) and renovation (refreshing existing products).

A strong R&D reputation

Alan Jope

We typically file between 250 and 350 new patent applications a year and our portfolio contains more than 20 000 patents and patent applications. By focusing our efforts in global and regional centres, with small implementation teams in the countries and factories, we make the best use of resources and bring bigger innovations to market more swiftly than ever before.

Food & nutrition

By providing foods that taste great and are good for you, our aim is to become the world’s leading food and nutrition business. To achieve that, we are continuously improving the nutritional profile of our product range and giving consumers a wider choice of tastier, healthier, more natural options as well as functional foods with additional health benefits.

For example;

  • Promise Activ SuperShots provide natural plant sterols that are clinically proven to help actively remove cholesterol as part of a low fat diet
  • Hellmann’s Extra Light uses citrus fibre to create a very low fat mayonnaise that still tastes great
  • Knorr StockPot revolutionises bouillon with a new jelly format that provides a more authentic, a closer-to-fresh bouillon that smells delicious, melts naturally into the food, develops a great aroma and tastes genuine and delicious
  • Breakthrough technology that uses Ice Structuring Proteins (ISP) in ice cream enables us to deliver healthier options and better quality
  • Catechin-rich tea helps people improve their body shape

Hygiene, health & beauty

The desire to be clean and healthy, and to look good is universal. Our home and personal care brands have promoted hygiene, health and beauty since the late 19th century and continue to play a vital role in millions of homes around the world today.

For example;

  • The Vaseline Skin Fund gives one million people better access to information about managing skin complaints
  • Our Oral Care teams run promotional and education programmes in partnership with the FDI World Dental Federation
  • Sunlight hand dishwashing liquid uses an ultra-concentrated formula that requires less water in production and less packaging
  • All Rexona, Axe and Dove brands incorporate a lightweight packaging design
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