Coca-Cola Hellenic scores A+ for effort

The Athens-based Coca-Cola Hellenic makes its debut Leaders appearance thanks to its rigorous reporting and CSR activities across the 28 countries in which it operates. It is the first European food and beverage company to reach an 'A+' rating according to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) for its CSR report.

The recently published Towards Sustainability has been reviewed by an external stakeholder review panel that offered a critical assessment of the report’s strengths and weaknesses. And there was even outside verification from the auditor denkstatt in accordance with both GRI and the international standard A1000.

So, what is included in this latest CSR report offering. Well, there’s a big focus on climate change; beyond the construction of three combined heat and power plants during the year (which will reduce CO2 emissions by up to 66% at each facility), the firm has also launched a programme to install solar panels on rooftops.

It has improved the efficiency of power use in its bottling operations, transportation and cold drink equipment which is progressively being replaced with models which are free of HFCs and are up to 63% more energy-efficient than previous coolers.

There has also been a big focus on water. More than 97% of wastewater was treated at bottling plants in 2010, and systems put in place enabled the reuse and recycling of 1.2B litres of water in the various production processes. Through the European Water Sustainability Sounding Board for Sugar the Company is examining the broader impact of water use in agriculture, especially when it comes to the production of sugar beet.

On packaging, the company managed to recover or recycle an average of 64% of packaging waste across 19 countries, and 85% of production waste across its operations. Through lightweighting, 5,000 tonnes of PET were saved.

On health and safety, the introduction of a concerted programme introduced in 2009 ensured serious accidents fell 39% and the number of manufacturing plants certified to the international OHSAS 18001 standard reached 84%.

And these stats are just scratching the surface. As the CSR report shows, the company is also working with suppliers to improve energy efficiency; contributing to the well-being of communities by investing €9.5M in a variety of projects; and providing consumers with an increasing choice of beverages suited to individual lifestyles, among other things.

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