answer the questions on the discussion, please. there are 5 questions answer them clearly. see the attached file.
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Discussion – Coca- Colas Water Neutrality Initiative
From approximately 2005 to the early 2010s, Coca- Cola faced an emerging issue: its
corporate impact on water quality, availability, and access around the world.
The Coca- Cola Company ( TCCC) was the worlds largest beverage company. The
company operated in more than 200 countries, providing 1.7 billion servings a day of
carbonated beverages, juices and juice drinks, bottled water, and ready- to- drink
coffees and teas. The company also partnered with more than 300 bottlers,
independent companies that manufactured various Coca- Cola products under
franchise. Seventy percent of the companys revenue came from outside the United
Water was essential to Coca- Colas business. The company and its bottlers used
around 82 billion gallons of water worldwide every year. Of this, about two- fifths
went into finished beverages, and the rest was used in the manufacturing process
for example, to wash bottles, clean equipment, and provide sanitation for employees.
Water supplies were also essential to the production of many ingredients in its
products, such as sugar, corn, citrus fruit, tea, and coffee. Coca- Colas chairman and
CEO put it bluntly when he commented that unless the communities where the
company operated had access to water, we havent got a business.
In 2003, Coca- Cola was abruptly reminded of the impact of its water use on local
com-munities when the Center for Science and the Environment, a think tank in
India, charged that Coca- Cola products there contained dangerous levels of pesticide
residues. Other activists in India charged that the companys bottling plants used too
much water, depriv-ing local villagers of supplies for drinking and irrigation. Local
officials shut down a Coca- Cola bottling plant in the state of Kerala, saying it was
depleting groundwater, and an Indian court issued an order requiring soft- drink
makers to list pesticide residues on their labels. In the United States, the India
Resource Center took up the cause, organizing a grassroots campaign to convince
schools and colleges to boycott Coca- Cola products.
Water was also emerging as a major concern to the worlds leaders. In the early 21st
century, more than 1 billion people worldwide lacked access to safe drinking water.
Water consumption was doubling every 20 years, an unsustainable rate of growth. By
2025, one-third of the worlds population was expected to face acute water shortages.
The secretary general of the United Nations highlighted water stress as a major cause
of disease, rising food prices, and regional conflicts, and called on national
governments and corporations to take steps to address the issue.
Coca- Cola undertook a comprehensive study, surveying its global operations to assess
its water management practices and impacts. It also reached out to other stakeholders,
includ-ing the World Wildlife Fund, the Nature Conservancy, the humanitarian
organization CARE, and various academic experts, to seek their advice. As the leader
of TCCCs water steward-ship initiative explained, the company also sat down with
each of our top bottlers, all of our operating groups, and really walked through all
aspects of water and really understood where they were coming from and reached
consensus though a very deliberate process.
In 2007, TCCC announced an aspirational goal of water neutrality , to safely return
to nature and to communities an amount of water equal to what we use in all our
beverages and their production, by the year 2020. This goal would be accomplished
in three ways: reduce, recycle, and replenish. The company said it would reduce its
own use of water by running its operations more efficiently. It would discharge water
used in manufacturing only if it were clean enough to support aquatic life treating
its wastewater itself where local authorities were unable to do so. Finally, the
company would replenish the balance of the water it used ( for example, as an
ingredient in bottled beverages) by participating in various water conservation
projects globally, such as river conservation, rainwater collection, and efficient
As the water neutrality initiative proceeded, Coca- Cola moved to measure and
publicly share its results. In 2011, the company reported that it had reduced its
water ratio ( the number of gallons of water used per gallon of product produced) by
13 percent from base-line levels. It estimated that 39 percent of its facilities were
using recycled water, and 23 percent of the water used in finished products had been
replenished through community water projects. The company also sought to measure
the benefits of more than 300 partner-ships with governments and nonprofit
organizations around the world, ranging from build-ing water treatment facilities in
Colombia, to restoring watersheds in Thailand, to improving sugarcane irrigation in
Australia. Coca- Cola estimated in 2011 that these con-servation projects had
replenished the equivalent of 31 percent of the water used in its finished beverages,
although it acknowledged that its methodologies for accurately quanti-fying water
benefits were still evolving.
Sources: The Coca- Cola Company, The Water Stewardship and Replenish Report,
2011, at www. thecoca- colacompany . com/ citizenship/ pdf/ replenish_ 2011.
.com/citizenship/pdf/replenish_2011. pdf, and 2010/ 2011 Sustainability Report, at
www. thecoca- colacompany. com / sustainabilityreport; Business for Social
Responsibility, Drinking It In: The Evolution of a Global Water Stewardship
Program at The Coca- Cola Company, March 2008; and Coca- Cola in India, in
Michael Yaziji and Jonathan Doh, NGOs and Corporations ( Cambridge, UK:
Cambridge University Press, 2009), pp. 115 19.
1. What was the public issue facing The Coca- Cola Company in this case? Describe
the performance expectations gap found in the case what were the stakeholders
concerns, and how did their expectations differ from the companys performance?
2. If you applied the strategic radar screens model to this case, which of the eight
environ-ments would be most significant, and why?
3. Apply the issue management life cycle process model to this case. Which stages of
the process can you identify in this case?
4. How did TCCC use stakeholder engagement and dialogue to improve its response
to this issue, and what were the benefits of engagement to the company?
5. In your opinion, did TCCC respond appropriately to this issue? Why or why not?
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