Novo Nordisk gives back with a take-back initiative


Every year, Novo Nordisk distributes millions of injector pens to people worldwide. The pens are made from high-quality materials – and yet, after use, most of them end up in landfills. That’s why Novo Nordisk had a strong desire to ensure recycling of the pens as part of their Circular for Zero strategy.


Our task was to create a habit-changing communication platform for the take-back initiative: A pilot project aimed at complex mix of stakeholders – from users of injector pens, patient associations and influencers to pharmacies and healthcare professionals.


We developed a core concept called ‘Too good to waste’. In an unpretentious and delicate way, it explained how materials from the Novo Nordisk injector pens can be reused for new products – urging users to hand in their pens at the pharmacy for recycling.

Recycling was also at the heart of the design. In facts, the universal recycling symbol became the design backbone and was even integrated into the pilot brand name and -logo.

The accompanying visual identity was simple yet bold: We designed a graphic universe that explained the life cycle of an injector pen – adaptable for print and digital formats, including animated explainer videos. The colour palette was sober, connoting sustainability and recycling.


The task was quite daunting, as we had to develop the brand-new visual identity and campaign in collaboration with a big group of stakeholders within a few weeks.

Luckily, the effort paid off: In the pilot cities, a stunning 20% of all injector pens were turned in for recycling – vastly surpassing the KPIs.

Because of the great results, Novo Nordisk is now rolling out the initiative and campaign in the rest of Denmark. Next step… The world!

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