The National Water Week is an awareness campaign by the Department of Water Affairs which serves as a powerful campaign mechanism re-iterating the value of water, the need for sustainable management of this scarce resource and the role water plays in eradicating poverty and under-development in South Africa. Despite the recent rains in Gauteng; our country remains in the grip of its worst drought in decades. Recently, the South African Weather Service announced that 2015 was the driest year on record and it shows no sign of abating. Those records date back to 1904. In light of this; National Water Week 2016 is a campaign that we at Tiger Brands take very seriously.
Global water scarcity – not only because of weather systems such as El Nino – is expected to increase substantially in the coming decades. In South Africa, this trend is likely to affect the availability, cost and quality of water – a critical input in our manufacturing processes. We use water to process products and as a key ingredient in many products themselves. In addition, given that the bulk of our products are for human consumption, water quality impacts the quality – and safety – of these products.
South Africa is classified as a water-stressed region which elevates water management to both a risk and critical success factor for Tiger Brands. We have several initiatives underway to improve our direct use of water, including the possible use of recycled and grey water at some facilities and water-saving schemes which have helped to reduce the volume of municipal water used each year.
On-line water metering
On-line water metering will enable more accurate reading and understanding for high-consumption areas in the Boksburg facility and our bakery sites, and ensure monthly charges from municipality readings are correct.
A project to re-use bottle-washer water for external cleaning, preparation structural cleaning and staff facilities will help to reduce water use.
The bulk of our water comes from municipal sources, and we have recently started monitoring consumption, as well as water availability and reliability by river basin and water management area source. We also interact with the government, Department of Trade and Industry (Dti) municipalities and water boards. This enables the group to influence legislation, build partnerships in the industry and to learn from organisations using sustainable best practices that Tiger Brands can apply to internal processes.
We recognise that we have a responsibility to promote responsible water use throughout our operations, and to also encourage our suppliers to do the same. We have focused on enhancing agricultural water efficiency programmes with suppliers, specifically for water-intensive crops, such as tomatoes, beans, fruits and sugarcane.
In 2015 Tiger Brands again participated in the Carbon Disclosure Projects (CDP’s) water disclosure program. Our response – and further detail on our approach to water stewardship – Click here to read our CDP water response
Drought Relief Drive on International Water Day: proud partnership with Shoprite KZN
Tiger Brands partnered with Shoprite KZN to support the Project Thirst Campaign which distributed water to learners of Greytown Primary School and Kranskop Primary School in Greytown, on International Water Day, 22 March 2016. Shoprite KZN Project Thirst Campaign has donated and delivered more than 202 536 Litres of water to various communities in the KZN region since its inception. With food security being our major corporate citizenship and in acknowledging that the drought significantly impacts food security, Tiger Brands will also distribute buckets of food to approximately 2200 Greytown community members through this initiative.
Shoprite KZN enlisted the support of The Gift of the Givers, a largest disaster response NGO of African origin on the African continent that delivers lifesaving aid in the form of Search and Rescue teams, medical personnel, medical equipment etc. to assist with the food and water distribution, which will be managed through Greytown Primary School and Kranskop Primary School.
Over and above the water delivery; each 20kg Food Bucket consists of Jungle Oats, Ace Maize meal, Aunt Caroline Rice, Koo canned Baked Beans, Black Cat Peanut Butter, Morvite Breakfast Porridge, Lion Dry Sugar Beans, Ace Maize Samp and Lion Lentils. We are grateful for the support of the Aunt Caroline team, a brand that Tiger Brands is proud to have in its stable, who have assisted with this important initiative.
To find out more on other drought relief initiatives that Tiger Brands has been involved in,