Food and drink manufacturers reduce water use by 14.4 per cent

Food and drink manufacturers signed up to the voluntary Federation House Commitment (FHC) have reduced water use by 14.4 per cent (compared to the 2007 baseline), according to a new report.

The FHC was launched in 2007 in order to help manufacturers of the food and drink industry improve their water efficiency, and according to the latest progress report, between 2007 and 2011 saved enough water to fill 2,400 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Over 70 signatories (across 278 sites) involved in the agreement, which is managed by WRAP and the Food & Drink Federation, have managed to reduce their water use by improving water recovery and reuse and fitting more efficient taps and toilets.

Dr Liz Goodwin, CEO of WRAP, said: “These findings are evidence that signatories to the Federation House Commitment are taking actions that are having a positive impact on water use. These results are helping to make a considerable contribution towards meeting the whole industry target of 20 per cent [water reduction] by 2020. The decrease in water use is particularly pleasing given that production at these sites increased by 10.7 per cent over the same reporting period.”

Andrew Kuyk, Director of Sustainability & Competitiveness at the Food & Drink Federation, said: “These results are very good news, for food manufacturers, for our customers and for the environment. They show that green growth is a reality, as production has increased while water usage has fallen. They also prove the value of voluntary agreements where government and businesses work together to deliver wider benefits.”

The full FHC annual report can be found on WRAP’s website.