Following the release of this year’s global Sustainability Report, Coca‑Cola has made significant progress in 2014 in advancing its top three sustainability priorities in support of Women, Water and Well-Being.
Here’s a summary of the key areas in which Coca‑Cola is delivering on its 2020 sustainability promises.
Coca‑Cola has increased the total number of women entrepreneurs worldwide to nearly 865,000 since 2010 through its 5by20™ initiative. About 313,000 women were involved in 2014, an increase of 22 percent over the previous year. The company is on track in its endeavour to unlock the economic potential of 5 million women worldwide by 2020.
5by20™ is Coca‑Cola’s global commitment to enable the economic empowerment of 5 million women entrepreneurs across the company’s value chain by 2020. 5by20 participants are entrepreneurs, daughters, mothers, caregivers, wives, breadwinners and more. When women work together they create a chain of inspiration: building stronger communities and creating a brighter future for those they touch.
Water use is extensive across all components of energy and food production. In a bid to reduce stresses on water resources, Coca‑Colacontinues to implement methods to reduce its water use.
With a target of 100 percent water replenishment by 2020, Coca‑Cola is ahead of schedule, having replenished an estimated 153.6 billion litres. In the last year, this equated to about 94 percent of the company’s finished beverage volume.
Globally, Coca‑Cola has cemented its support for fresh water conservation, having become a signatory to a joint statement by WaterAid and longtime conservation partner, World Wildlife Fund (WWF). All are dedicated to achieving universal access to water, sanitation and hygiene.
In Australia, the Coca‑Cola Foundation has helped fund Project Catalyst, a WWF project in partnership with Reef Catchments and sugarcane farmers, to improve water quality and reduce the impact of pollution on the Great Barrier Reef.
On track to reaching its wellbeing goals, Coca‑Cola continues its advocacy for healthy and happy living. Globally last year, the company introduced more than 100 reduced-calorie, low-calorie and no-calorie beverage alternatives while supporting more than 330 active, healthy-living programs across 112 markets.
Coca‑Cola also donated nearly $US22 million to support nutrition and physical activity programs in 40 countries. In Australia for example, Coca‑Cola in partnership with the Bicycle Network and the Beacon Foundation is successfully encouraging high school students, especially those from disadvantaged communities, to get moving ― through The Happiness Cycle.
The Happiness Cycle in action in remote Arnhem Land, NT.
Coca‑Cola has partnered with various entities around the globe in what it calls the “Global Triangle” of achieving sustainability in business. This includes cooperation from governments, communities and private sectors.
An example is Coca‑Cola’s partnership with will.i.am, the multi-faceted entertainer famous for his work with The Black Eyed Peas. Together they launched the EKOCYCLE™ brand, an initiative which supports recycling by helping consumers recognise that items they consider waste today may be a part of a lifestyle product they can use tomorrow.
Sustainability spurs innovation, just as innovation spurs sustainability. will.i.am and Muhtar Kent at the EKOCYCLE Shop-in-Shop at Harrods.
Moreover, last year Coca‑Cola and its partners recovered and recycled 48 percent of bottles and cans sent to market. In developed markets this figure swells to 61 percent. The company’s sustainability endeavours have seen it design more resource-friendly packaging while increasing its use of renewable materials.
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