News Release

  • (2020/1/7)

Suntory Kyushu Kumamoto Plant Receives Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) Certification

- Second plant after Suntory Okudaisen Bunanomori Water Plant to get certified -

The Kyushu Kumamoto Plant has received certification by the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) with regard to its sustainable use of water in the basin around the plant. It is the second plant in Japan to obtain this certification after the Suntory Okudaisen Bunanomori Water Plant received the first certification in December 2018.

AWS is an organization established jointly by NGOs including the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Nature Conservancy (TNC) with corporate partners, in order to promote global water sustainability. AWS certification refers to the sustainable use of water by factories around the world, with the goal of promoting water preservation and stewardship.

The Suntory Group carries out various water-related activities, driven by its core corporate mission of “To Create Harmony with People and Nature” and the promise of “Mizu To Ikiru” to stakeholders. The Kyushu Kumamoto Plant is conducting forest protection activities under its Natural Water Sanctuary Aso project in the roughly 420ha of forests around the plant, which is the water resource cultivation area. We are also engaged in groundwater cultivation through “fuyumizutanbo*”, which are inundated agricultural fields near the plant used in water resource cultivation, as an integral part of the Natural Water Sanctuary project. The AWS certification indicates approval of the Suntory Group’s grasp of water intake and outgo in the basin around the plant, water resource cultivation based on scientific data, water conservation and water quality management at the plant, collaboration with other stakeholders in the basin, and suitable information release, in accordance with its Sustainable Water Philosophy.

Fuyumizutanbo is a traditional agricultural method which entails the spreading out of the water over rice paddies during the winter when they fallow, with the goal being the formation of fertile soil and the reduction of weeds. Efficient groundwater cultivation is expected as the result of water penetration into the ground. At the Suntory Group, we have been conducting fuyumizutanbo activities in cooperation with the government and region in the town of Mashiki in Kamimashiki District, Kumamoto since 2010, in an effort to bring about more broad-ranging functionality of groundwater cultivation.

Suntory intends to continue not only using water suitably and returning it cleanly to nature, but contributing to healthy water circulation in nature by protecting forests that nurture groundwater and so on: that is, by recognizing “water sustainability” as one of the most important tasks for the business, and working to preserve and regenerate nature.

●Suntory Group’s environmental activities
Since 2003, Suntory began working on Natural Water Sanctuaries, starting with Suntory Natural Water Sanctuary Aso, to cultivate forests that nurture groundwater. This activity has now expanded to 21 locations across 15 prefectures in Japan and spreads over roughly 12,000ha of land. In June 2019, Suntory Group’s domestic plants achieved the goal of cultivating water equal to more than twice the amount of groundwater drawn by the Group’s plants.
The Suntory Mizuiku-Natural Water Education Program for environmental education for future generations in Japan was also started from the Outdoor School of Forest and Water in Aso 2004 and continues to spread across the country. The company has also been implementing the Suntory Mizuiku-Natural Water Education Program in Vietnam from 2015 as well as Indonesia and Thailand from 2019, which are highly evaluated by local governments and residents.
In 2017, “Sustainable Water Philosophy” was established as a Suntory Group basic principle when working with water. The Suntory Group will continue sharing its philosophies throughout the entire group of more than 300 domestic and international companies. It will also implement activities in each regional environment to help conserve water, the most precious resource for its business.

▼Suntory Group environmental activities:

  • Suntory Kyushu Kumamoto Plant
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