The Coca-Cola Company & WWF Global Partnership

Creating a More Climate-Resilient and Water-Secure Future

Partnership Overview

In 2007, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and The Coca-Cola Company (Coca-Cola) launched a groundbreaking partnership that inspired local cooperation across all of Coca-Cola's operating units. In total, our work together has spanned more than 50 of the approximately 100 countries where WWF works. Our focus has been to help ensure healthy, thriving freshwater basins around the world, including in the Mesoamerican Reef (MAR) in Central America, the Yangtze River in China, the Danube River in Europe, the Rio Conchos in Mexico, the Umzimvubu River in South Africa, and more. We have expanded our work beyond water to improve environmental performance across Coca-Cola's supply chain, including reducing emissions. Together, we're strengthening the resilience of vulnerable communities to respond to the climate crisis and water stresses, helping reimagine how we source agricultural ingredients, and transforming packaging to prevent waste.

In addition to its partnership with The Coca-Cola Company, WWF has received grant funding from The Coca-Cola Foundation to support impactful initiatives such as the Living Danube Partnership and the Replenish Africa Initiative. This report features work from the past five years of partnership between WWF and The Coca-Cola Company and the work supported by The Coca-Cola Foundation around the globe.

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For more than a decade, our partnership with WWF has made meaningful progress in addressing complex issues and challenges in our world, focused primarily on water in our communities. I've had the opportunity to travel to river basins where we work and see the positive outcomes of this journey for local communities and our business. There is more to be done. We believe true change can be achieved with additional partners, support, and investment to drive lasting, positive changes for our planet.

Bea Perez, Senior Vice President and Chief Communications, Sustainability and Strategic Partnerships Officer, The Coca-Cola Company

A view of China's Yangtze river and the mountains surronding it © Michel Gunther / WWF

Beyond 2020: A Look Ahead

In August 2021, The Coca-Cola Company and WWF renewed our partnership for three more years.

Recognizing the power of our partnership and the need for locally relevant solutions at a global scale, we will work together to develop strategies to further support sustainable ecosystems and natural capital. We will continue to work to reduce Coca-Cola's environmental footprint and seek to build water and climate resilience across all of Coca-Cola's operating units and in more than 50 of the approximately 100 countries where WWF works. This involves engaging across freshwater ecosystems, plastic packaging, greenhouse gas emissions, and agricultural supply chains. To achieve these goals, we will build collective action by catalyzing investments of other stakeholders around the world, with the goal of engaging more than 200 organizations in our work. Our core areas of work are all interconnected, each influencing the other. We think holistically about how we can achieve our goals toward a more resilient and water-secure future for people, nature, and business.

Read more about the next phase of our partnership.

WWF works with the private sector to reduce footprints and reach scale in tackling the problems of water scarcity, climate change, and loss of nature. The past 14 years of our work with The Coca-Cola Company have spanned over 50 countries. We're proud of the results we've achieved. Since the dual crises of climate change and nature loss loom larger than ever, we're raising ambition in the next phase of our partnership—to build resilient communities and ecosystems that can meet the challenges ahead. There's no time to waste.

Carter Roberts, President and CEO, World Wildlife Fund

The colorful algae growing in the riverbed makes the water looks red. At the banks, there is a lush jungle. © Day’s Edge Productions/WWF-US

Partnership Impact Areas

Fresh water

Drove innovative, climate-smart solutions to freshwater challenges through nature-based solutions such as ecosystem restoration, basin-wide community engagement, and comprehensive policy support to tackle a broad range of water issues, from water shortages and pollution to access to clean water. Catalyzed how the value of nature is integrated with company and public policy decision-making.


Helped Coca-Cola set its “drink in your hand” carbon emission reduction goal,1 which addressed Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions across the Coca-Cola system’s global operations. Advised in the development of a 2030 science-based target for greenhouse gas emissions reduction for the Coca-Cola system’s global footprint.2 Created pilot projects to design and test climate adaptation and resilience innovations to help Coca-Cola understand and respond to climate risks for the benefit of people and nature in the places where it operates.

1Coca-Cola’s work toward its “drink in your hand” goal reduced its relative carbon emissions by 25% by 2020, against a 2010 baseline.

2Coca-Cola’s science-based target is to reduce absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 25% by 2030 from a 2015 baseline.


Advanced global dialogue and action on how Coca-Cola sources, uses, recycles, and reduces plastic packaging by measuring the company’s global plastic footprint and identifying key interventions to enact and track progress year over year.


Prioritized and increased global sustainable ingredient sourcing, particularly around driving more sustainable production of corn and cane sweeteners, driving collective action across industry through initiatives including Bonsucro and Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture.

Global Impact Snapshot

Our partnership has spanned across 50 countries. Click the map markers for some high-level examples of our progress and impacts.

Map of the world
In the foreground stands a traditional building with a teal roof. Donting Lake is in the background © Audra Melton / The Coca-Cola Company / WWF

Conserving Freshwater Resources

Our water stewardship partnership identified priority basins around the world, and by 2017, our projects extended across 50 countries. We've worked to drive collective action with governments, local communities, and other businesses to ensure these basins are protected well into the future.

In the Mesoamarican Reef (MAR) and Yangtze River basins, two main partnership focus areas, we developed replicable models for collective action and government engagement. In the MAR, for example, we institutionalized water reserves in Guatemala that will safeguard 2.2 billion cubic meters of freshwater resources. In the Yangtze, we achieved two consecutive years of finless porpoise population growth and the reintroduction of the Père David's deer species into the wild as a result of watershed protection and restoration. In 2021, China upgraded the finless porpoise to the highest level of protection, a welcome announcement and a win for the partnership.

© Justin Jin/WWF-US

Case study

Rebirth Along China's Yangtze River

Père David’s Deer released back into the wild

Improved living environment for finless porpoise

Advanced National Parks Program in China

200,000+ hectares of wetland safeguarded

From its source on the icy Himalayan plateaus to its glittering delta on the East China Sea near Shanghai, the Yangtze River connects China's magnificently disparate landscapes and cultures. The river also propels the country's strong economic growth. The 1.8 million-square-kilometer Yangtze River basin provides water, transport, and food for almost one-third of China's 1.4 billion people and contributes more than 40% of the country's gross domestic product.

Despite government-driven, orchestrated efforts for environmental protection, rapid growth continues to pose ecological challenges to the Yangtze, the world's third-longest river. Coca-Cola and WWF are working together in the upper, central, and lower Yangtze as well as in the Hunan province to promote sustainable development. The work in Hunan province is focused on improving the health of a subbasin of the Liuyang River, the Xiang River, and Dongting Lake, from their tributary sources to their confluence with the Yangtze.

WWF and Coca-Cola were instrumental in creating pilot projects along the Yangtze that show a path forward for conservation. In many cases, these pilot projects were adopted and scaled up by the government. Through this approach, we have been able to secure stronger environmental protection of the Yangtze.

The Yangtze is critical in supporting continued economic growth in China as well as local biodiversity, freshwater, and terrestrial ecosystems.

Through implementation of the pilot projects, the partnership worked to address negative ecological impacts on the headwaters through enhanced forest conservation, on the central hills through sustainable agricultural practices, and on the basin's lower reaches through wetland restoration. As a result, Père David's deer were released back into the wild in the Dongting Lake area in 2016 and finless porpoise populations have experienced steady growth.

In rural communities with no sewer infrastructure, the partnership constructed wetlands that cleanse household wastewater, preventing pollution from entering natural waterways and providing clean water for farm irrigation. This approach has been widely adopted by the provincial government.

The partnership supported the first catchment-level Liuyang Natural Capital Assessment, which called for the creation of Dongting National Park, a plan that has been embraced by the government.

Success in the Dongting subbasin led to work in Poyang Lake, where the partnership helped prepare local communities for an impending fishing moratorium to aid the finless porpoise in the Nanji National Nature Reserve. The local communities now have access to alternative livelihoods, including roles as park docents who help enforce the moratorium and encourage bird-watching tourism. The local community has embraced the nature reserve, which provides a safe haven for finless porpoises and water birds.

WWF and Coca-Cola worked to create two oxbow lake reserves, the Tian-e-zhou and He-wang-miao, which are critical habitats for the Yangtze finless porpoise. These habitats were the world's first two successful conservation sites for freshwater porpoises that were reintroduced to the wild. The partnership also supports conservation in nature reserves in the central and lower Yangtze, protecting millions of migratory birds. This work touches many Ramsar sites, including the Shanghai Chongming Dongtan. As a result of our work, Chinese provincial and national governments are now safeguarding more than 200,000 hectares of high-conservation-value wetlands.

Read more about the partnership's work in the Yangtze.

Aerial shot of the Danube River © Alexander Ivanov / WWF CEE

Case study

Working Together for a Living Danube

Seven-year Living Danube Partnership

Nine projects across six Eastern European countries

Increase river’s capacity by ~13 million m³

Restore >5,462 hectares of vital areas

Considered by many to be the lifeline of Europe, the Danube River links 10 countries along nearly 3,000 kilometers of the river and its tributaries, sustaining countless human and natural habitats through flood protection, drinking water, and recreation. Tragically, it is estimated that 80% of the floodplains and wetlands along the Danube and its main tributaries have disappeared over the past 150 years, resulting in plummeting fish and wildlife populations and worsening water quality.

To help mitigate these risks and dependence on proper water management in the region, in 2014, Coca-Cola and WWF-Central and Eastern Europe joined forces with the International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River (ICPDR), to help restore these vital wetlands and floodplains, with financial support from The Coca-Cola Foundation, leveraging European Union and national funds.

This unique, cross-sectoral cooperation, called the Living Danube Partnership, has brought together the political framework of the ICPDR and its member governments, the resources and capabilities of the Coca-Cola system and The Coca-Cola Foundation, and the capacity and know-how of WWF.

Most of the collaborative work entailed connecting river stretches or floodplains to the river system by removing rockfill dams, installing or modernizing sluices for water retention, creating open water surfaces, and improving water supply channels—while also helping create a regional movement for wetland conservation and restoration.

The ambitious, seven-year Living Danube Partnership is on track to increase the Danube River's capacity by the equivalent of more than 4,800 Olympic-sized swimming pools (about 13 million cubic meters) and to restore more than 5,462 hectares of vital wetlands, rivers, and floodplains through nine projects in Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, and Romania by the end of 2021.

Read more about our partnership’s work in the Danube.

a wood lined river with two people standing in it but far away © Jordan Hamelin /WWF-Canada

Case study

Safeguarding Canada’s Fresh Water

Restored important salmon spawning areas

Restored waterways to a more natural state

Restored golf course fairways to original habitat

Improved conditions for threatened wildlife

In Canada, where thousands of lakes, rivers, streams, and wetlands hold 20% of the world's fresh water, Coca-Cola and WWF-Canada have partnered on freshwater conservation and replenishment since 2007.

When a 2017 WWF-Canada report revealed that many of Canada's freshwater ecosystems were under threat from climate change, fragmentation, and habitat loss, WWF-Canada and Coca-Cola Canada established the WWF-Canada Restoration Fund. The fund supported community-driven projects across the country, providing impactful and lasting benefits for both nature and communities.

Support from the fund helped enable the local nonprofit organization ACAP Saint John to open and restore sections of the Newman's and Caledonia Brooks in Saint John, New Brunswick that were diverted or developed to a more natural state. It also aided the Salt Spring Island Conservancy with restoring former golf course fairways to their original habitat and helped the Central Westcoast Forest Society improve conditions for wild Pacific salmon and other threatened wildlife.

The fund supported British Columbia's Katzie First Nation in restoring important salmon spawning areas by removing in-stream barriers caused by a landslide and building rock and log fortifications to protect spawning beds. This sparked the development of a multi-stakeholder partnership to implement an innovative 10-year vision for a First Nations-led watershed restoration, ensuring co-benefits to climate and community.

In 2019, and continuing to the present day, our collaboration has expanded to include related issues such as shoreline litter through Coca-Cola's support as a co-presenting sponsor of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, which is Canada's largest direct-action conservation program; it encourages people to remove shoreline litter and to improve the health of waters for all. This collaboration was inspired by our complementary goals to keep plastic out of nature (WWF) and to build a World Without Waste (The Coca-Cola Company).

cracked ice © Adam Voorhes/WWF-US

Mitigating GHG Emissions and Building Resilience to Climate Change

When it comes to climate change, our partnership work focuses on mitigating the Coca-Cola system's greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint while contributing to the resilience of the broader community and nature. At the outset of the partnership, through WWF's Climate Savers program, our work addressed emissions in Coca-Cola's global bottling operations. While that work continued, the company set and achieved a goal to reduce the carbon emissions intensity of the “drink in your hand” by 25% by 2020 against a 2010 baseline. In 2019, WWF assisted the company in setting a science-based target to reduce absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 25% by 2030 from a 2015 baseline. The target, validated by the Science Based Targets initiative, is consistent with reductions required to keep global warming to 2ºC.

As Coca-Cola works to reduce GHG emissions from its operations and value chain and to better understand the worsening impacts of climate change, WWF is helping the company develop sustainability strategies that contribute to the resilience of communities and nature, and strategies that are resilient in the face of rapid, ongoing change. The work involves identifying and directly linking key existing processes, assessments, strategies, and plans across the larger Coca-Cola system to find synergies for assessing and building resilience to climate impacts. This includes its 2030 Water Security Strategy source water and facility vulnerability assessments and local action plans, sustainable sourcing guides and standards, reducing plastic waste, and disaster risk reduction and response. Through engagement with WWF's Climate Business Network, Coca-Cola will stay aligned with leading corporate approaches on climate, and WWF will advise directly on how to strengthen overall goals and initiatives.

In 2020, Coca-Cola contributed to two WWF climate resilience reports: to Resilience: A practical guide for business and nature, and its companion guide, Rising to Resilience: How water stewardship can help business build climate resilience.

Clear turquoise river in a rain forest National Park in Guatemala Semuc Champey at sunset © Shutterstock / soft_light / WWF

Case study

Building Climate Change Resilience and Protecting Vital Water in Guatemala

>$25,000 of firefighting equipment donated

70 people trained as firefighters

10,000 trees planted

500 hectares of critical forest protected

Thousands of people call Guatemala's Teculutan and Pasabien watersheds home. Here, rivers and forests are important ecosystems that are being impacted by climate change—by drought, forest fires, and irregular rainfall. Agriculture is becoming less productive, resulting in many abandoning farming livelihoods, while water scarcity has increased in rural communities.

More than 10 years ago, working with local communities, WWF-Guatemala/Mesoamerica and Fundacion Defensores de la Naturaleza launched an initiative in the Sierra de las Minas Biosphere Reserve to examine how water was managed in specific sub-watersheds. Coca-Cola was one of the first participants in this initiative, investing in water sustainability.

By investing in climate-smart integrated plans for managing the watershed—including forest firefighting, severe-weather early warning systems, and other climate-smart projects—we are working toward building landscape resilience to benefit people and nature.

The ongoing work in this region now takes a holistic approach to landscape and water management informed by climate information. By investing in climate-smart integrated plans for managing the watershed—including forest firefighting, severe-weather early warning systems, and other climate-smart projects—we are working toward building landscape resilience to benefit people and nature.

In the Pasabien watersheds, the impact includes donating $25,000 in firefighting equipment, training 70 people as firefighters, and raising awareness of forest fire prevention and control, reaching more than 17,500 people. In addition, 10,000 trees have been planted, and 500 hectares in the critical forest zone have been protected.

Communities in this region have been at the core of the progress realized. Prior to the initiative, in the upper-middle part of the watershed, forests were being used intensively for fuel to cook, and land was being cleared for subsistence farming and cattle ranching. As communities have become engaged and empowered, this happens less every year.

Read more about the partnership's work in Guatemala.

Looking down into Cooper Canyon in the Sierra Tarahumara © Alfredo Rodriguez-Pineda / WWF-Mexico

Case study

Coping With Drought in Mexico

Integrated support program for 25 indigenous communities

Aim to reduce vulnerability to droughts and frosts

3,725 rainwater harvest systems installed across 305 towns

The grandeur of the Sierra Tarahumara enchants and amazes. Deep canyons among vast volcanic geology contrast with the beauty of the blue sky. Despite the beauty, life is not easy for rural, Indigenous communities.

Here, rugged topography and cold weather are challenges. Communities subsist with seasonal agricultural practices, which are the sole source of family consumption. The water supply is obtained from springs regularly exposed to weather and contaminated by wildlife. The living situation, which is more challenging during the dry season, worsens during long periods of drought, which have become more frequent with climate change and deforestation, and can cause famine and disease.

As part of recovery and conservation efforts of the Rio Conchos water resources, WWF-Mexico, The Coca-Cola Foundation, and Coca Cola-Mexico Foundation integrated a social-support program for 25 Indigenous communities in the Sierra Tarahumara area. The main objective was to reduce the communities' vulnerability to droughts and frosts through proven and sustainable practices.

Through the project, communities were trained on and assisted with the installation of rainwater capture systems that include a water storage tank with a capacity of 10 cubic meters, which can last a Tarahumara household up to four or five months. With the support of WWF-Mexico, The Coca-Cola Foundation, and Coca Cola-Mexico Foundation, 300 cisterns for rainwater capture have been installed, 521 people from 37 communities have been trained on how to build rainwater capture systems and vegetable farming, five community water committees were integrated, three communal water supply systems were repaired, 138 vegetable gardens were built, 9,500 meters of stone barriers were constructed for soil protection, a native seed bank has been strengthened, and 19 springs are protected. As a result, the communities have more regular sources of water to protect them through droughts, and the community water committees have strengthened local governance.

Partnership actions have positively impacted the region and facilitated the decision for the Chihuahua state government to replicate the rainwater harvesting model across Sierra Tarahumara. Over the past four years, they have installed 3,725 rainwater harvest systems across 305 towns in the region.

Panoramic shot of Theewaterskloof Dam in Cape Town, South Africa. © James Suter / Black Bean Productions / WWF-US

Case study

Addressing Disruptions of South Africa’s Water Supply

Restoration of the Wolseley wetlands & Umzimvubu watershed

Total of 568 hectares of invasive plants removed

Supports economic empowerment & skills development in rural areas

As climate change disrupts South Africa's water system, affecting drinking water supplies, sanitation, and food and energy production, The Coca-Cola Foundation, WWF-South Africa, and partners are supporting work to manage key watersheds to optimize the country's future water supply.

This includes supporting projects to remove “thirsty” invasive plants from main water catchment areas that feed major cities and towns across the country. Non-native invasive plants consume millions of liters of water each year in these areas, resulting in water shortages and permanent loss from an already stressed water system.

The partnership is focused on two key watersheds in South Africa. The Wolseley wetlands restoration project, located in the greater Cape Town area, resulted in the clearing of 470 hectares of invasive plant species from a critical biodiverse wetlands area in the Upper Breede River Valley in this important agricultural region. It created 94 jobs, empowering 29 women and 36 youth.

The other significant project is restoring the Umzimvubu watershed in Matatiele in the Eastern Cape. To date, this has resulted in the clearing of 118 hectares of invasive plants, empowering 34 women and 27 youth. Additionally, this project protects five natural springs, improving the community's access to spring water.

The Coca-Cola Company's South Africa franchise is also involved in water stewardship initiatives. In addition to reducing water usage at plants, the local franchise is investing in cost-effective solutions to manage water security in South Africa. These investments in ecological infrastructure are designed to address issues of water security upstream in watersheds in cost-effective and locally appropriate ways. While each of the projects is geographically diverse, most catchment areas are remote, and the projects support economic empowerment and skills development in rural areas across South Africa.

Aerial view of a coastline in Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras. The ocean is a deep blue. At the barrier reef, the water is turquoise. © Antonio Busiello/WWF-US

Reducing Plastic Waste in Nature

Plastic in nature, particularly in our oceans and rivers, is a global crisis. Yet eliminating all plastic from our lives is neither feasible nor desirable. Plastic has many benefits, but it has no place in nature.

Our partnership is advancing global dialogue and action on how plastics are sourced, used, and recycled by characterizing issues and identifying company-related impacts and risks. Coca-Cola joined WWF as a founding member of both the Bioplastic Feedstock Alliance (improving the sustainability of bioplastic supply) and ReSource: Plastic, and WWF played an integral role in the development of the company's World Without Waste program, a sustainable packaging initiative focused on driving the circular economy through three fundamental goals: design, collect, and partner.

Seastar or Starfish washed up on sand beach by sea, Queensland, Australia. © Staffan Widstrand / WWF

Case study

Keeping Plastic in the Supply Loop—and Out of Nature

Working with global businesses to redesign the source, use & disposal of plastics

Helping companies examine their plastic footprint

Creating solutions for tackling the plastic pollution problem

With global plastic pollution accelerating, in 2019, WWF launched ReSource: Plastic (ReSource), a collaborative platform that convenes leading companies to create and activate programs and solutions to keep plastic in the supply loop and out of the natural environment. The platform involves a first-of-its-kind effort to quantify corporate impact and track company actions and opportunities to reduce plastic waste.

Through ReSource, of which The Coca-Cola Company is a Principal Member, WWF and members aim to help prevent around 10 million metric tons of the world's plastic waste pollution. WWF estimates as few as 100 companies have the potential to make this goal a reality. Even more important, this number could triple by inspiring a ripple effect across supply chains and industry sectors.

By inspiring action across their sectors and supply chains, as few as 100 companies have the potential to prevent roughly 50 million metric tons of the world's plastic waste by 2030.

ReSource is helping companies align their large-scale plastic commitments from aspiration to meaningful, measurable action. Through its participation, the company will collaborate across industries to ensure a systems-based approach to addressing plastic production, consumption, waste management, and recycling as a single system. This effort also helps drive synergies between initiatives like the Ellen MacArthur Foundation/UN Environment New Plastics Economy Global Commitment and local and regional plastic pacts.

Developed in partnership with The Coca-Cola Company and other ReSource Principal Members, the Transparent 2020 baseline report measures and examines the plastic footprints of these leading global companies and provides a detailed look at the challenges and potential solutions for tackling the plastic pollution problem.

On the left, a woman cuts up a used plastic bottle. On the right, a person puts a bottle in a recycling bin with a screen. © The Coca Cola Company

Case study

Creatively Encouraging Recycling in South Korea

Launced Plastic Waste Zero Campaign

Installed recycling machines in public places

Educated citizens on importance of circular economy

Encouraged improved recycling habits

Building on an established partnership initiated to protect and improve freshwater conditions, in 2019 Coca-Cola and WWF-Korea launched a Plastic Waste Zero campaign, installing recycling machines in public places to educate citizens on the importance of a circular economy and to encourage improved recycling habits. Acting as a reverse vending machine, consumers were able to return empty PET bottles and aluminum cans into the machines.

The Plastic Waste Zero campaign was implemented in two venues, the first at a pop-up store called the Waste Market and the second in a local cinema. The Waste Market exposed visitors to the idea of a circular economy. By returning PET bottles and aluminum cans into the reverse vending machines, consumers received points. Accumulated points could be used in the market or converted into cash, creating a positive recycling experience and hopefully motivating citizens to embrace sustainable habits. At the cinema, reverse vending machines were located near beverage vending machines to encourage users to recycle their waste instead of disposing of it. Both machines gathered information on recycling behaviors in public spaces to further understand Korean consumers' recycling habits.

For the Waste Market, campaign efforts generated nearly 55 million impressions across social media and collected around 47,000 plastic bottles and aluminum cans, with a total of nearly 17,000 visitors in 10 weeks.

After realizing recycling campaign success, WWF-Korea and Coca-Cola continued to implement collection projects in South Korea to encourage proper recycling. Due to the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic, a contact-free collection campaign was initiated using online platforms and individual delivery service. The project, called ONETHEPL—a shortened version of "ONE more use of THE PLastic" and partly a homonym for "wonderful"—resulted in 10 tons of plastic being collected by 3,000 people. Having debuted in 2020, ONETHEPL's second season started in July 2021.

A stepped field of tea © Audra Melton / The Coca-Cola Company / WWF

Promoting Sustainable Agriculture

A sustainable and resilient agricultural supply chain is critical for people, business, and nature. Our sustainable agriculture partnership work has focused on prioritizing and increasing global sustainable ingredient sourcing, with a historical focus on sweeteners and a forward look at connections with water security and community climate change resilience.

Together, we have introduced and encouraged sustainable farming practices to improve water management, increased biodiversity in local wetlands, helped ensure stable livelihoods, and supported Coca-Cola's work to sustainably source its key agricultural ingredients. As of 2020, 56% of the company's priority ingredient volumes were sustainably sourced, up from 54% in 2019 and 8% in 2013, at the beginning of the program.

We also drive collective action across industry through initiatives including Bonsucro and Field to Market. As founding members of Field to Market, along with other stakeholders, we are working to create opportunities across the agricultural supply chain for continuous improvements in productivity, environmental quality, and human well-being. Field to Market provides a common framework for sustainability measurement that farmers and the supply chain can use to better understand and assess performance at the field, local, state, and national levels. WWF and Coca-Cola provide collaborative leadership in Field to Market and participate in science-based, industry-wide dialogue. Field to Market is one of the pathways to sustainably sourced corn as part of Coca-Cola's sustainable agricultural sourcing commitment.

a closeup photo of sugarcane growing in a field © WWF-US / Steve Morello

Case study

Sustainably Sourcing Sugar in the Mesoamerican Reef Region

Partnered with Bonsucro which promotes global sustainable sugarcane practices

Provided leadership & guidance to the organization

Implemented Bonsucro in Central American countries

As one of the world's "thirstiest" crops, sugarcane has a significant environmental impact—particularly when it comes to water use and quality. Yet it can be produced in environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable ways. Coca-Cola and WWF worked with Bonsucro and a wide range of stakeholders to develop, strengthen, and promote standards for sustainable sugarcane cultivation and processing. We have also provided leadership and strategic guidance to Bonsucro by participating on its board of directors and in the Members' Council.

Bonsucro is a global multi-stakeholder nonprofit organization, with the purpose to collectively accelerate the sustainable production of sugarcane. The organization works with 250 members in over 50 countries along the sugarcane supply chain.

In 2014, AZUNOSA, Coca-Cola's main sugar supplier in Honduras, became the first Bonsucro-certified company in Central America and the Caribbean, with technical support provided by WWF, leading the way and demonstrating that Bonsucro could be implemented in Central American countries. Our partnership also developed Bonsucro-based Sustainability Guiding Principles via the Honduran Sugar Producers Association.

In Guatemala, Coca-Cola suppliers Ingenio Magdalena and Ingenio La Union were certified in 2016 and 2019, respectively. Ingenio La Union and Ingenio Pantaleon, also in Guatemala, participated in WWF-led training on the Bonsucro standard.

For Coca-Cola to require suppliers to achieve a sustainability standard certification such as Bonsucro's, it supports the partnership's efforts to address natural resource challenges that impact fresh water. The Bonsucro certifications achieved by the sugar mills in Honduras will help protect the Mesoamerican Reef.

Traditional tea ceremony at Happy Farmhouse Initiative and rural water security in the Yangtze River Basin, China © Audra Melton / The Coca-Cola Company / WWF

Case study

Promoting Sustainable Tea Production Along the Yangtze River, China

Introduced sustainable farming to >733 hectares of tea gardens

Irrigation systems built & wetlands constructed

Provided more water for people and communities

Promoted an increase in biological diversity

With the Hunan province in China, we created a landmark partnership focused on the conservation of the Liuyang River-Xiang River-Dongting subbasin to contribute to a healthier, more resilient Yangtze River. To demonstrate on-the-ground sustainable river solutions that can serve as models for other projects in the region, we established several pilot projects, including one on sustainable tea production.

Such collaborations have enabled suppliers to educate the public, reduce agriculture-generated pollution, promote agritourism, and increase biological diversity on their lands.

The first sustainable tea production pilot took place at the Jinjing Tea Company estate, where we introduced sustainable farming practices—including building water-collecting and irrigation systems and constructing wetlands—on more than 733 hectares of tea gardens. As a result of our partnership work, the five ponds atop this tea mountain are home once again to fish, birds, and insects. The technology and techniques applied on the estate have been shared and have improved the upper and middle Yangtze, giving more water to people and communities. Such collaborations have enabled suppliers like Jinjing to educate the public, reduce agriculture-generated pollution, promote agritourism, and increase biological diversity on their lands.

In 2015, a memorandum of agreement between WWF and Hunan Tea Group was signed to promote sustainable tea. Based on the pilot project in Jinjing, WWF supported drafting the standard of sustainable tea technically and financially, further promoting sustainable tea farming and agriculture in the Hunan province.

Sunlight illuminates the coral at the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, Australia. © Troy Mayne

Case study

Improving Farming Practices to Save the Great Barrier Reef

Engaged 159 farmers in Project Catalyst

Saved 39.2 tonnes of dissovled inorganic nitrogen from the reef

Saved 6,751 tonnes of sediment from the reef

The Great Barrier Reef is the largest reef system on Earth. On the World Heritage list, it's also one of Australia's most popular sites for tourists and locals, but its current state of health is a global concern. Scientists estimate that the reef has lost up to 50% of its shallow-water coral resulting from coral bleaching since 2016.

Climate change and water pollution have greatly affected the health of the reef, leading to many environmental efforts being made to counteract these threats. One of these efforts is Project Catalyst, a joint collaboration among sugarcane farmers, WWF-Australia, and the Australian government, with grant funding from The Coca-Cola Foundation, which aims to reduce the agricultural runoff impacting the reef.

Project Catalyst began in 2009 with just 19 farmers who were determined to make a difference. Since then, the project has grown and now engages 159 farmers, who, through their own innovation, in 2020 saved 39.2 tonnes of dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) and 6,751 tonnes of sediment from flowing into the reef. For this project, The Coca-Cola Foundation funded best-practice adoption for 23 growers, who saved 1.6 tonnes of DIN and 1,090 tonnes of sediment from flowing into the reef.

In the 13 years that Project Catalyst has been operating, The Coca-Cola Foundation has contributed approximately $7 million to the project. The funding aims to foster the inherent entrepreneurial spirit of farmers, while a framework of data collection and distribution allows the entire industry to share in the successes or to learn from the failures.