Coca-Cola South Africa Opens Green Valpré Plant and Launches Innovative PlantBottle™ Packaging
Valpré Spring Water to be bottled at greenest plant in Africa and to introduce a new bottle made 30 percent from plants to the continent.
JOHANNESBURG - Coca-Cola South Africa today announced the opening of its new Valpré plant and the introduction of PlantBottle™ packaging to Africa. The new state-of-the-art facility will fill Valpré Spring Water in Heidelberg, southeast of Johannesburg.
Selected for its close proximity to markets and distribution sites in the Guateng Region and a similar source water profile as Valpré’s, the new plant will help Coca-Cola South Africa meet the needs of the increasing demand for bottled water in the country.
Keynote speaker, Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Ms. Bomo Molewa said, “The opening of the new Valpré plant in Heidelberg, and the launch of PlantBottle™, supports government’s mandate to create infrastructure, develop skills, increase the number of woman in the workforce and ensure sustainable development with a focus on minimizing the impact on the environment. It is a notable example of the kind of development that we encourage all South African industries to adopt.”
The new Valpré plant is undergoing Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification -- an internationally recognized program that is the accepted benchmark for design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings. The design of facility maximizes recycled materials and makes optimal use of water and solar energy. It has a “zero to landfill” target.
The Company today also launches Coca-Cola’s innovative PlantBottle™ packaging. This packaging has revolutionized the beverage industry as the first-ever recyclable PET plastic beverage bottle made from up to 30 percent plant that is 100 percent recyclable. This is the 10th market to launch the bottle in the world and the first in Africa.
PlantBottle™ packaging has a lighter footprint on the environment due to its reduced dependence on nonrenewables such as petroleum. By the end of 2010 (in two years since its introduction in the United States), more than 2.5 billion PlantBottle™ packages had been produced, eliminating the equivalent of approximately 60 000 barrels of oil from our plastic bottles.
South African National Bottled Water Association (SANBWA) executive director, Charlotte Metcalf, said both the plant and new bottle significantly advance the bottling industry’s ’green’ strategy. “With the new Heidelberg plant, Valpré will reduce its carbon footprint, lower its water usage ratio, adopt energy efficient lighting and production technologies, and boost its solid waste recovery -- all while providing its market with a sustainable product packaged in a bottle that takes a giant step towards using renewable resource.”
Coca-Cola South Africa President Bill Egbe stated, “When we set out in 2009 to build this state-of-the art plant, we did so with the goal of ensuring that the plant reinforced all that The Coca-Cola Company and Valpré Spring Water stand for... unwavering quality and commitment to the sustainability of our environment and communities.”
In addition to the environmental aspects of the plant and the new PlantBottle™, the Heidelberg plant is run by a team of talented, black women operators. This reinforces Coca-Cola’s commitment to positively impact the communities in which it operates. In 2010, Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO of Coca-Cola announced the Company’s 5 BY 20 pledge which aims to empower 5 million women by 2020 through the Coca-Cola system. This is one of several programmes in South Africa to meet this challenge.
There is no other brand in Coca-Cola South Africa’s portfolio of 30 still and sparkling beverages better suited to represent sustainability and quality than Valpré. It is one of the most highly respected water brands in the world. In May 2011, Valpré was awarded the “Gold Quality” label by Monde Selection, an International Institute for Quality Selections. This is the first time a water brand (premium or mainstream) has received this prestigious award, demonstrating the brand’s high quality standards.
Click here for more information on PlantBottle™.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world’s most valuable brand, the Company’s portfolio features 15 billion dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply and Georgia. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, juices and juice drinks and ready-to-drink teas and coffees. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company’s beverages at a rate of 1.7 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. For more information about our Company, please visit our website at www.thecoca-colacompany.com.
Formed in 1997 as a standards setting and representative body, SANBWA is a not-for-profit organisation committed to working with its members to continuously improve and protect the conservation of all water resources wherever possible, while promoting the image and reputation of bottled water through adherence to global benchmarked standards. For more information about SANBWA, please visit www.sanbwa.org.za.
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