Major Food and Drink Manufacturers Pledge to Reduce Water Use

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Twenty-one of the UK's leading food and drink manufacturers have today signed an historic agreement to improve their water efficiency and thereby reduce water use. Once rolled out across the sector as a whole, the initiative could save some 140 million litres of water per day - equivalent to 56 Olympic-size swimming pools - and a combined financial saving of around £60m per year on water bills.

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Twenty-one of the UK's leading food and drink manufacturers have today signed an historic agreement to improve their water efficiency and thereby reduce water use.

Once rolled out across the sector as a whole, the initiative could save some 140 million litres of water per day - equivalent to 56 Olympic-size swimming pools - and a combined financial saving of around £60m per year on water bills.

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Under the Federation House Commitment, jointly developed by the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) and resource efficiency experts Envirowise, the first 21 signatories have pledged to review their on-site water use and take action to reduce this wherever possible.

Envirowise offers businesses of all sizes and sectors a wide range of free, independent and practical environmental advice.

The signatories are: apetito; Birds Eye Iglo; Britvic; Cadbury Schweppes; Coca-Cola Enterprises; GlaxoSmithKline; Kellogg Marketing & Sales Co; Kraft Foods UK; Mars Snackfood; Müller Dairy (UK); Nestlé UK; PepsiCo UK; Premier Foods; Tate & Lyle; UIN Foods; Unilever UK; Uniq; United Biscuits; Warburtons; Weetabix; and Young's Seafood. These companies generate a combined annual turnover of over £15 billion.
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The Commitment will help FDF members to achieve their water reduction goals, as set out in the Federation's recently launched Five-fold Environmental Ambition. It will also be central to achieving the industry-wide target in the Food Industry Sustainability Strategy to reduce water use, outside of that embedded in products themselves, by 20% by 2020 compared to 2007.

Companies working with Envirowise will review their current water use and develop site specific action plans to significantly cut water use and costs within six months of signing up to the commitment. They will report annually to Envirowise on water and cost savings made on site. Envirowise will offer signatories a package of support measures to help them.

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Lord Rooker, Minister for Sustainable Food and Farming and Animal Health, said:

"I am very pleased to support this joint FDF and Envirowise initiative which has resulted in the first voluntary framework under which food and drink companies can work systematically towards improving efficiency and reducing water use wherever possible. It is particularly pleasing to see so many influential companies, responsible for well known household brands, signing up on day one. I would like to urge more companies in the sector to follow the leadership and commitment being shown by FDF and its members to the environment."

Callton Young OBE, Director of Sustainability & Competitiveness, FDF said:

"Last October FDF chose to be bold about the environment by targeting priorities where we can make the biggest difference through collective action. Today's signing of the Federation House Commitment by many of our largest member companies is an important demonstration of this commitment and their desire to reduce the environmental impacts of our sector through the widespread adoption of water efficiency best practice. The leadership that they are bringing to bear on this important issue is to be applauded."

Dr Martin Gibson, Programme Director, Envirowise added:
"We are very pleased to have jointly developed The Federation House Commitment with FDF. The agreement has an important role to play in helping to improve water efficiency in the food and drink industry and to achieving significant savings of a precious resource. Envirowise worked on the strategic aims of the Food Industry Sustainability Strategy and we look forward to working with industry to help them achieve their water reduction goals." read all about the environment, by reading the environmental publication.
visit the envirowise site http://www.envirowise.gov.uk

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