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Water neutral scheme

Tshirt which reads: Review. Reduce. Replenish.

Two of our South African breweries – Newlands in Cape Town and Ibhayi in Port Elizabeth – are taking part in the pilot phase of the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) Water Neutral Scheme of which SAB Ltd is a partner. The scheme encourages South African businesses to reduce their water consumption and offset what they do use by investing in projects that clear invasive vegetation from river catchment areas. In doing so they release equivalent volumes of water back into the aquatic ecosystem.

The benefits are threefold – job creation through the initial clearing and subsequent maintenance of the vegetation, the rehabilitation of catchment areas, and the release of more water. The pilot phase will be used to develop and refine the scheme before it is made available to other participants.

Super smart about power

With South Africa facing power shortages over the next seven years, the South African government is requiring businesses to cut the power they use by 12% to 15%. SAB is a signatory to the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) Energy Efficiency Accord which promotes voluntary co-operation in meeting national energy efficiency targets. The ‘Super Powers’ campaign at SAB Ltd is one tool towards this end.

With the tag line, ‘Super smart about power’, the campaign engages staff, raises awareness of the issue and encourages employees to suggest ideas as to how and where energy can be saved. As an incentive, an energy-efficient fridge was offered as a prize at each site. By the end of the campaign in November 2008, employees had submitted 381 suggestions.

The Super Powers campaign is just one element of a far wider initiative which has so far reduced SAB’s energy consumption by up to 10%.

Producing compost from brewery waste

Compost heap

Our Prospecton brewery in Durban, South Africa, illustrates how waste from our operations, in this case effluent, can be reused and processed into soil-boosting compost.

Waste sludge in the effluent balance tanks was tested and found to be suitable for a fertiliser-type additive in compost. The sludge is residue from the malted barley, hops and yeast and was previously removed from the brewery three times a week and disposed of to landfill. As the sludge is now being reused as a source of nutrients for agricultural soil, its removal as waste has reduced to once a week, resulting in savings of approximately US$39,000 a year.

Supporting Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment

KickStart award winners

KickStart is one of the ways SAB Ltd supports Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE), the policy for distributing wealth more fairly across a broad spectrum of South African society. The programme seeks to promote business awareness and develop a culture of entrepreneurship among young people through training, providing grants as start-up capital and mentoring and assistance during the set-up phase.

Antonio Pooe entered the KickStart competition in 2007, won a regional grant in Egoli and then went on to win approximately US$17,000 more as a runner-up in the national competition. An expert in fraud detection, he used his grant to start Exatech, a niche company specialising in fraud protection, detection and computer forensics. Exatech is growing and now employs four full-time and four part-time members of staff. Aside from the monetary award, Antonio found that KickStart encouraged him to go it alone after a tough year trying to break into the market.

Supporting education

School classroom

Research conducted by the Human Sciences Research Council estimates a shortfall of 32,000 maths and English teachers in South Africa. In partnership with the Independent Schools Association of Southern Africa (ISASA), SAB Ltd is helping to address the shortage through the ISASA Mathematics and English Programme.

Launched in 2007, the programme aims to place 300 promising black learners from disadvantaged backgrounds in ISASA schools. It also recruits trainee teachers and places successful applicants in top schools for the duration of their teaching degree, to expose them to best practice.

The programme supports government initiatives to address skills shortfalls in areas such as mathematics, science and ICT (information communications technology), which are crucial to South Africa’s economic growth. SAB Ltd also invests in the development of maths and science educators through the Maths Centre for Professional Teachers.