The Coca-Cola Company is committed to creating more long-term sustainable value for everyone connected to our business and the communities we proudly serve across more than 200 countries and territories.
Our work on sustainable business practices not only helps to improve the lives of individuals and families across the Coca-Cola system, it also helps to strengthen the connections between our brands and the people who reach for them more than 1.9 billion times a day.
This is fundamentally important to us as we know our business thrives and grows best when our local communities are also thriving and growing.
To this end, we’ve established a set of priorities that are intimately connected to our business of producing and selling high-quality beverages and providing people with simple moments of refreshment and togetherness.
Today, our primary sustainability focus is on the “Three Ws” of women, water and well-being.
Women, often pillars of the communities we serve, tend to invest strongly in their families and neighborhoods. However, they remain at an economic disadvantage in almost every part of the globe. That’s why we made a commitment to an initiative called 5by20™—with a goal to help enable 5 million women entrepreneurs across our global value chain by 2020.
As of year-end 2015, we had helped to enable the economic empowerment of more than 1.2 million businesswomen with programs in the form of training, mentoring, micro-loans and more.
Water, the primary ingredient in our products, is essential to the sustainability of our business. In 2015, we achieved our goal of replenishing 100 percent of the water we use in our finished beverages as calculated using generally accepted scientific methods and with the assistance of independent, reputable partners like Deloitte, The Nature Conservancy and Limnotech. But reaching 100 percent replenishment doesn’t mean our work is done and as our business grows, we will continue to maintain our stewardship of this valuable resource.
As for well-being, we are taking a holistic view of what it means to make a positive difference in the world. This effort begins with the role of our brands and the value we create for those linked to our business, including our associates, retail and restaurant customers, bottling partners, suppliers and many others.
Our work doesn’t stop there. In 2015, we also joined with partners in advance of the COP21 conference to sign the Food and Beverage Leadership Statement on Climate Change.
Moreover, we continue to seek new ways to increase supply-chain sustainability and reduce our overall carbon footprint. In 2015, we placed in market more than 490,000 HFC-free beverage coolers, bringing our total to 1.8 million.
Beyond our sustainability commitments, we support the United Nations Global Compact, advancing its principles through our actions and our relationships. We believe in creating value and engaging across local, regional and national governments, NGOs, educational institutions, and our local communities.
Of course, there are always areas where we can improve. In 2015, we took action to engage more transparently with groups and individuals concerned about obesity. We’re also concerned about the growing challenge of non-communicable diseases, and we’ve expanded our efforts to be part of the solution through sweetener and packaging innovations, product reformulation, responsible marketing, promoting clear facts and increasing the number of no-, low- and reduced-calorie beverage options.
Macroeconomic uncertainty and volatility remain concerns for our business. We believe, however, that a business like ours must continue to invest in our brands and our communities in all economic circumstances. This approach is a long-term business strategy and can also help the people and communities enduring times of hardship.
In all we do, our business tries to take the approach of staying “constructively discontent.” We’re always encouraging our partners, our colleagues and ourselves to achieve more, work more holistically and be more efficient.
Thank you for your interest in Coca-Cola’s ongoing sustainability journey. We welcome your feedback and your suggestions as we continue in our relentless pursuit of ever more sustainable business practices and greater value creation.
Very best regards,
Chief Executive Officer
The Coca-Cola Company
Chief Operating Officer
The Coca-Cola Company