Coca-Cola eyes water conservation

Last Updated: Sat, Jan 12, 2013 09:04 hrs

Union Water Resource Secretary Dhruv Vijay Singh and former Chief of Indian Army Gen V P Malik on Friday launched "Water for Future", an advanced engineering intervention for water conservation, here.

The project was launched in the presence of A. N. Mistry, Chief Engineer & Additional Secretary, Gujarat Water & Irrigation Department.

"Water For Future" is a special initiative by The Coca-Cola Company to conserve water through internal recycle and reuse process. This activity so far has been piloted in Mexico and India, and will help save about 30% of fresh water additionally.

In India, Water For Future has been piloted at The Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Private Limited (HCCBPL) at Goblej village in Gujarat´s Kheda district. It is the first project in India.

This plant has 6 lines, which produces juice drinks, sparkling beverages and packaged drinking water.

The company has invested over Rs. 500 crores in the state-of-the art bottling plant till date.

As this bottling plant is a zero discharge plant, this intervention will further help in recycling and re-using process waste water and reducing treated effluent discharge considerably.

The HCCB Goblej plant has already undertaken several water conservation projects and technologies under the 3R - Reduce, Recycle and Replenish strategy.

To further improve its water use strategy, this facility took on the 'Water for Future' initiative, which is a Water Recovery and Reuse System.

This intervention uses an innovative technology to provide water for reuse in processes such as clean-in-place and bottle washing activities. The water is not used in beverages.

The result is high-quality water that meets and/or exceeds even the most stringent drinking water standards.

Speaking at the launch, Gen. V P Malik, who is also Chairman of Advisory Council for Environment and Sustainability at Coca-Cola India, said: "We all are aware that water today is an increasingly scarce commodity and it is important for every sector to play its role. It is important for industries to continuously look for ways to better manage natural resources.

"HCCBPL's 'Water for Future' is a unique initiative, as it not only helps reuse of water but also helps in reducing treated effluent discharge considerably."

Speaking on the occasion, T Krishnakumar, CEO of Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt. Ltd., said, "Water is a precious resource. Our endeavor is to continuously improve processes to reduce water consumption in manufacturing. Water For Future is a strategic step in this direction.

"Goblej plant along with a plant in Mexico, were chosen to implement this new technology. The results have been very encouraging and this initiative has already been recognized at international forums. We will continue to work rigorously on our reuse, recycle and replenish strategy to ensure optimal utilization of water."

At the event, several experts shared their thoughts and ideas on how can industry play a role in working on optimizing water usage.

Prominent amongst them were Prof Tushar Shah, International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Prof Shaswat Bandopadhyay, Center for Environmental Planning and Technology (CEPT) and Prof (retd) Subhash Chander from IIT Delhi.

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