Heineken has committed itself to the CEO Water Mandate, launched by the United Nations in July 2007.

The brewer said today (23 March) that the initiative has been designed to encourage companies to play "a more active role" in solving issues related to water availability and quality. The Water Mandate has been signed by Heineken's CEO, Jean-François van Boxmeer.

"Over the last few decades, we have consistently reduced our water consumption and improved the quality of the water which we emit at the end of the brewing process", said van Boxmeer. "However, given the increasing challenges around water availability and quality, the CEO Water Mandate provides us with an excellent platform to share and learn best practice from others in this vitally important area."

The company claimed that it has improved its water efficiency by more than 10% in recent years, as well as having installed wastewater treatment plants at almost all of its breweries which do not have access to municipal wastewater facilities.
In line with the Water Mandate, Heineken said it intends to expand its existing approach to water consumption, access and discharge and is currently assessing long-term water availability for all its breweries as input into this process.

The CEO Water Mandate covers six areas: direct operations, supply chain and watershed management, collective action, public policy, community engagement and transparency.