Sustainability Assessment

The Coca-Cola Company is arguably the most renowned and one of the biggest brands in the world. From its humble beginnings in 1886 to current status as the world’s largest beverage company, the firm has experienced unprecedented growth. The key to this growth has been its engagement in sustainable practices and a keen commitment to corporate social responsibility.  Through such initiatives, the Coca-Cola Company has managed to become a leading brand in global community relations.

The Coca-Cola Company engages in some sustainability initiatives. This ingenuity aims at making the company a good corporate citizen as well as at building it as a customer-favored brand. Among these initiatives, the chief one is energy saving. The Coca-Cola Company has started a very aggressive campaign to minimize the energy use at all its global facilities. In reducing the amount of energy required to produce a liter of beverage and for blowing bottles, the company has strived to cut down on energy consumption. More importantly, the firm’s factories have instituted ways to utilize process heat and steam, and, as a result, achieved considerable energy savings (2014/2015 Sustainability Report, 2015).

In addition to the measures mentioned above, water conservation has taken a center place in the sustainability agenda of Coca-Cola Company. Conservation efforts are clearly evident in the drive to reduce the risk of exhausting water resources from the company facilities. Among other things, the company has ensured that none of its waste can pollute water sources (2014/2015 Sustainability Report, 2015). It has also engaged in rain collection to minimize the amount of water used in its operations. Further, the company contributed to the funding of the research that helped to improve water catchment in the areas where factories operate. Even more proactively, the firm employs an air cleaning instead of water in its facilities.

Through its corporate social responsibility initiative, the Coca-Cola Company has established some programs aimed at improving community welfare and the company-community relations (Grillo, 2011). For instance, Coca-Cola has a long proven history of supporting the global sport. Case in point is the Olympic Games, for which Coca-Cola was the first sponsor and continues the support to date. The Coca-Cola Company is also the largest sponsor of the FIFA world soccer championship. Through this, the firm continuously emphasizes on the support for sport as a way of bringing communities together, and this has gone a long way in pushing its sustainability agenda.

Along with its Corporate Social Responsibility agenda, the Coca-Cola Company has demonstrated a commitment to global sustainability standards. The firm is a front runner in environmental protection. One of the measures that the company has instituted is the reduction of its carbon footprint. The corporation has done this through the use of energy efficient production methods, process automation, and use of information technology to reduce the amount of paper used in its offices (“Governance & Ethics”, 2015). Additionally, the firm has instituted measures to ensure that it operates a fleet of energy-efficient vehicles and only using the said vehicles when required.

Moreover, Coca-Cola is actively engaged in the women empowerment initiative, offering a gender-sensitive workplace environment. The company has also partnered with community-based initiatives to support women groups in parts of Africa, Asia, and Central America. Using its 5by20 initiative, Coca-Cola has committed to helping empower 5 million women by 2020. Towards this end, as at 2014, the project had succeeded in empowering just under one million women around the globe (2014/2015 Sustainability Report, 2015). The firm has pledged to help in building sustainable communities. Through its disaster relief fund, Coca-Cola has helped victims of natural disasters in their efforts to recover from their losses. The corporation has also been instrumental in helping the public access affordable healthcare and essential medicine through a similar program in the rural areas around which the firm has based its operations.

The company has achieved some significant gains in environmental conservation. By reducing its carbon footprint, Coca-Cola has gone a long way towards decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, one of the single biggest sources of climate change on the globe. The firm has also adopted a sustainable packaging and in this way ensured that its products do not adversely affect the environment (“Governance & Ethics”, 2015). Furthermore, through various funding programs for a many fields including water conservation, renewable energy, environmental sustainability, and climate change research, the firm is apparently committed to the environmental agenda.

The Coca-Cola Company has actively pushed the sustainability agenda. The firm’s corporate government ethic has helped improve the company profile. More importantly, this has enabled them to become more efficient in their processes while at the same time being mindful of the community.

References

2014/2015 Sustainability Report.(2015). Coca-Cola Company. Retrieved on 31 August 2015, from http://assets.coca-colacompany.com/29/0b/1c0121a84941aa46b9c9f6201ac9/2014-2015-sustainability-report.15_080415.pdf

Governance & Ethics. (2015). The Coca-Cola Company. Retrieved on 31 August 2015, from http://www.coca-colacompany.com/our-company/governance-ethics/governance-ethics

Grillo, B. (2011). Exploring the links between international business and poverty reduction: the Coca-Cola/SABMiller value chain impacts in Zambia and El Salvador. Oxfam Policy and Practice: Private Sector8(1), 1-88.

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