Water policies and stewardship

water stewardship

Water policies and stewardship

What is the issue?

There is a general lack of public awareness of water as a vital environmental issue. To encourage consumers to become better water stewards, we need effective water policies and more accessible information around water issues.

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Why is it important?

As a major food manufacturer as well as a provider of bottled water, Nestlé has an opportunity to engage consumers about water issues and help to influence water policies. We do this through strategic partnerships with government bodies and environmental groups.

At Nestlé we work closely with nature every day and work hard to promote water stewardship, encourage sustainable use and protect unique water sources. However, responsible water management does not stop at being best-in-class within the walls of our factories, but extends to collective actions with other water stakeholders to ensure the long-term sustainability.
Federico Sarzi Braga, Country Business Manager – Nestlé Waters, UK&I


Regular contact with nature and natural places has a profoundly positive effect on individuals’ wellbeing. Nestlé Waters’ Get Better With Nature campaign has helped members of the communities in which the company operates to understand, value and take action for the nature on their doorstep and to feel happier and healthier as a result.
Janel Fone – Director of Marketing and Development, Wildlife Trusts


  • In progress
  • By 2016 – (globally) Continue to build the 2030 Water Resources Group (WRG) by adding two more countries per year and further develop and publicise its Global Catalogue on Good Practices.

Communities that are motivated and able to manage their water resources.


New opportunities for strategic partnerships with NGOs and government.

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What are we doing about it?

Effective and responsible water stewardship is vital to meet the safe water needs of the world’s growing population. We believe that achieving this requires a joint effort and common goals among governments and business.

We recognise that water stewardship requires a catchment-based approach. This involves considering all the areas across our value chain that affect the water environment, including where we source our materials, our factory locations and where our consumers and local communities live. By working with all stakeholders at catchment level, including our employees, suppliers, partner organisations and the public, we can raise awareness of the issue and find opportunities to address it.

On a global level, we advocate for effective water stewardship through our partnerships with governments, industry bodies, NGOs and research institutions. Many of our senior global leaders play a leading role in the 2030 Water Resources Group (2030 WRG), a public-private collaboration developing practical solutions for water resources reform in water-stressed developing economies.

In the UK we have partnered with Project WET Foundation, an NGO that develops educational tools to support the delivery of fun activities in schools that raise awareness of water issues among children. Through our Get Better With Nature programme, Nestlé Waters also works with the Derbyshire, Herts and Middlesex and Berks, Bucks and Oxon branches of the Wildlife Trust to promote water stewardship in these areas. Nestlé UK & Ireland is a member of the Business in the Community’s Water Taskforce, which helps industry find ways of managing water more effectively.

Through these and other partnerships, we are helping to put water in the public spotlight in the UK and encourage our consumers to become better water stewards.

Two decades of support from Nestlé Waters have enabled Project WET to bring hands-on, action-oriented water education to people in places that we could not have reached on our own. We are eager to continue to expand the scope of our work with Nestlé Waters in this renewed partnership.
Dennis Nelson, President and CEO of Project WET Foundation

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Celebrating World Water Day

Celebrated every year on 22 March, World Water Day is an international event dedicated to the protection of the world’s water resources. In the UK, we use the occasion as an opportunity to promote awareness and encourage action around effective water management among our employees and our local communities.

On 22 March 2015, Nestlé Waters and the Project WET Foundation came together globally to raise awareness of water conservation and the importance of healthy hydration. This involved our volunteers working in 29 different countries, reaching thousands of children across the world.

In the UK, Nestlé Water’s volunteers spent the day working with five schools in Buxton and one in Buckinghamshire, helping pupils aged 7-12 take part in a whole host of fun, games and educational activities to raise awareness of water issues.

The activities included Aqua Bodies, in which pupils will learn about the function of water in their bodies, A Drop in the Bucket, which helps to explain why drinking water is a limited resource and The Incredible Journey in which students create a bracelet with beads to simulate the movement of water within the water cycle.

Also in 2015, Nestlé Waters signed a new four-year partnership with the Project WET Foundation. Through the partnership, Nestlé Waters will continue to support Project WET’s work in expanding water education among educators and children around the world.

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What’s next?

In 2016, we plan to do more work to promote effective water stewardship in our upstream supply chain. This will start with our Milk Plan Water Project, a pilot carried our in partnership with the Rivers Trust and Business in the Community to help our dairy farmers better manage their impact on water quality and flood mitigation opportunities.