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Circular Economy

Enabling the transformation

DSM’s ambition is to enable the transformation towards a Circular Economy.
Circular Economy

Restorative by design

This Circular Economy provides food, materials and energy in a way that is restorative by design, helped by nature’s ability to regenerate resources for our consumption. In other words, making sure resources serve our economy to their best potential, as opposed to consuming products briefly and then throwing them away.

Recycling is obviously good practice, but in the Circular Economy one can also think of more durable materials, products that are easier to repair, re-use and re-purpose, thereby preventing waste in the first place.

Meeting increasing demand

The expected increase in world population and growing middle class will increase demand for food, materials, and energy. Some of the resources we rely on for these products simply can't be replaced by nature at anything like the rate we consume them, fossil fuels being an obvious example.

Busy market

This rate of consumption not only creates scarcity of natural resources we depend on for our daily food and other consumables, but it also harms natural cycles, often with negative side effects such as climate change and pollution. A Circular Economy in contrast will keep products, components and materials in use at their highest value for the longest possible time.

Strategic growth opportunity

DSM is therefore dedicated to securing the future availability of natural resources, and unlocking more value from the limited resources that are available. DSM focuses on the following to further progress to a Circular Economy:

  • Reduce resource use of our own manufacturing processes, those of our customers and the end-consumer.
  • Replace the scarce and toxic resources in our manufacturing processes and the final products of our customers.
  • Extend the durability of products and materials.
  • Recover materials after first use and valorization of organic waste streams.


To help achieve a transition to a Circular Economy DSM works with governments, companies, universities and Non-Governmental Organizations, including the following:

Ellen MacArthur Foundation website

Ellen MacArthur Foundation

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation was established in 2010 with the aim of accelerating the transition to the Circular Economy. Since its creation the charity has emerged as a global thought leader, establishing circular economy on the agenda of decision makers across business, government and academia.

CE100 website


The Circular Economy 100 (CE100) is a pre-competitive innovation programme established to enable organisations to develop new opportunities and realise their Circular Economy ambitions faster. It brings together corporates, governments and cities, academic institutions, emerging innovators and affiliates in a unique multi-stakeholder platform.

WEF - Project Circular Economy website

Project Circular Economy

The objective of the World Economic Forum's Project Circular Economy is to advance the Circular Economy public-private agenda for impact globally, through building on the success of Project Mainstream to date and helping the CEOs in the Project Steering Committee realize their vision for a wider Forum platform for action that draws together key Circular Economy activities and helps to connect them; engages with new markets, policy makers and regulators; opens up meaningful channels with new sectors such as technology and finance; whilst also deepening communities of purpose across existing champion sectors such as materials innovation and consumer goods companies.