Accelerating change on water and sanitation
Water is vital for our business and for our communities. This is why we are committed to having a positive impact on water where we source and operate.
Alongside the actions set out in our water policy and through our water targets, we have set a bold ambition to improve the lives of millions of people in the communities where we source and operate before 2030.
Part of our strategy for delivering this is about improving health and wellbeing among key communities. This includes promoting equitable access to and maintenance of clean water, dignified toilet facilities, and handwashing facilities with soap. It also includes the promotion of hygiene behaviour change, handwashing and sanitation habits and food hygiene habits.
We recognise that access to fresh water and sanitation services are an essential human right. Therefore, through this work and aligned to our Water Policy, we strive to protect water resources and we promote global access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) principles, seeking to guarantee access to water to all our employees and to vulnerable communities in the areas where we source and operate.
Read more about how we’re helping accelerate change on water and sanitation through three initiatives:
Creating sanitation facilities from repurposed waste in India
At our Pune site in India, the local 'Green Team' (a network of volunteer colleagues across Givaudan who are committed to driving positive change in their day-to-day work), created the innovative 'Waste to Wellness' initiative.
The initiative set out to repurpose waste into products supporting the health and hygiene of local communities. They did this by turning waste plastic drums into sanitary units, using them to create everything from walls to floors to the toilet structures themselves.
The project was launched in late 2022 at the rapidly-growing Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Secondary and Higher Secondary School to benefit its 550 pupils who were suffering from a lack of access to sanitation facilities.
Based on the health and hygiene requirements of the students, the team was able to design the most appropriate sanitary unit to suit the school environment.
Rainwater harvesting in Kardelwadi village
Summer monsoons were the only regular water source for Kardelwadi, a village near the Pune site. The uncertainty of the water supply led to limitations on crop production, leading to increased unemployment and fewer business opportunities for the villagers.
Harvesting rainwater by storing it in a small dam that could support nearby wells, bore wells and other water sources, was an obvious solution and one that we have been able to make a reality.
Supported by Givaudan and completed in record time for the monsoons, the KT Weir dam (a Kolhapuri type dam) has increased water availability for drinking, agriculture and animal husbandry by 2.5 million litres per year and has directly benefitted 60 farming families.
Over time, it will lead to a gradual increase in employment, income and reduced effort for women who had to secure water for the household from a source 3 kilometres away.
Building wells and reservoirs with boswellia collectors
Many people in rural India still lack proper access to drinking water. Among them are communities collecting boswellia in wild forests. Boswellia is a tree resin prized in traditional medicine for its soothing properties and used by Givaudan to produce a skincare ingredient.
The communities reached by this project are part of a socially and economically disadvantaged group with limited access to basic services. Prior to the initiation of the initiative, villagers were spending a lot of time every day collecting drinking water as a result of lack of close-by infrastructure. During the dry season in particular, this meant that they often ended up with too little water to cover their domestic needs.
To improve the living conditions of these communities, the Givaudan Foundation partnered with UEBT (Union For Ethical BioTrade), a non-profit association that promotes sourcing with respect, to install drinking water infrastructures. Together with committed villagers from two producing communities, a total of eight water facilities were built.
As a result, more than 1,600 people are estimated to have gained easier access to clean water especially by reducing the time they need for this activity. A water committee is in place for the maintenance of the water points, to ensure their good functioning over time and guarantee that the water is collected by the villagers according to hygienic standards.
Finally, thanks to those new water points, villagers are now able to source in a shorter period of time, as much water as their households would need.
For more information on World Water Day visit: www.worldwaterday.org