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Our Focus Areas

Our Focus Areas

We focus on six areas where we and our stakeholders believe we can make the biggest difference.

Our six focus areas are:

• Protecting Water Resources

• Reducing CO₂ Emissions

• Sourcing Sustainably

• Advocating Responsible Consumption

• Promoting Health and Safety

• Growing with our Communities


Protecting Water Resources

We use water throughout our Supply Chain – from sustaining crops to making beer in our brewery: beer is after all 95% water. We continue to maintain our leadership position as one of the most water efficient breweries in HEINEKEN worldwide. We are in the top 20% of HEINEKEN breweries for water efficiency.

Our dedicated environmental champions continue to drive water savings throughout the brewery. We will continue to use water wisely to protect our water resources and reduce our environmental impacts.


Reducing CO2 emissions

CO2 emissions directly contribute to climate change and cause temperatures and sea levels to rise. This in turn has an impact on the availability and cost of raw materials and other resources.

We’ve set ambitious targets to cut the amount of energy we use in brewing, cooling, and distribution. We’re also working with our suppliers to reduce emissions in the design and production of our packaging, and you’ll find a recycle message on all our secondary packaging.

Reducing CO2 Emissions in Production

For many years, we’ve been focusing on how we can cut the amount of energy we use in our brewing process. We use 100% renewable electricity and have had a 55% reduction in CO₂ emissions per hl from production since 2008. We continue to invest in our brewery to make it as energy and water efficient as it can be.

Reduce CO2 Emissions in Cooling

100% of our fridges are ‘green’. All HEINEKEN Ireland ‘green fridges’ have three characteristics: use a hydrocarbon refrigerant, are LED illuminated and have an energy management system. This results in an almost 45% increase in energy efficiency.

Optimising our Distribution

We have achieved a reduction of 20% of our CO2 emissions in distribution. This was achieved three years ahead of our global target and was done through working on our distribution activities and improving our route to market. We continue to work on optimising our distribution.


Sourcing Sustainably

We must develop a sustainable supply chain that shares value with local communities, protects the environment and provides a consistent supply of raw materials for our business. We aim to operate in a way that improves the quality of life for local individuals and communities, helps the environment and ensures a consistent supply of our raw materials.

At HEINEKEN Ireland, a strategic focus remains to support local farmers and suppliers, which in turn generates employment and has a positive economic impact. We source 100% of our malted barley from Irish farmers.

100% of our suppliers have signed and were compliant with the principles expressed in our Supplier Code.


Advocating Responsible Consumption

We want to make moderate and responsible consumption aspirational. We use the strength of our brands – and particularly our Heineken® brand – to help this message resonate with consumers, creating campaigns that can lead the debate. In 2017, we spent 11% of our Heineken® media budget on responsible consumption with our “When you Drive, Never Drink” campaign. We continue to use our Enjoy Heineken® Responsibly platform. This includes a dedicated website, advertising at all major sponsorship events. Enjoy Heineken® Responsibly is also displayed on all commercial communication and packaging. At HEINEKEN Ireland, all employees adhere to our Cool@Work policy, our workplace alcohol information and prevention programme. We also advocate for increased consumer transparency and in 2017, we included ingredient and nutritional labelling on all of our packaged beer products. This information is available online for all our draught beer products

Building partnerships to address alcohol related harm

As an industry leader, we have a responsibility to recognise the problem of alcohol misuse. We work closely with industry groups, government, nongovernmental organisations and third parties. We are members of Drinkaware, an independent social aspects organisation whose vision is an Ireland where alcohol is not misused. We are compliant with all marketing codes of practice and all of our consumer facing employees receive training.

Working in partnership with the Cork Simon Community

HEINEKEN Ireland has been involved with the Cork Simon Community for the past 18 years through fundraising and volunteering. For the past six years, we’ve supported Cork Simon and the Addiction Aftercare Programme. The partnership aims to increase the number of people accessing treatment and prevent them from returning to homelessness. A dedicated support worker and aftercare housing service help people consolidate their recovery.


Promoting Health and Safety

We are continuing to strive for a zero accident environment. Our colleagues are key to all that we do, and health and safety has always been an integral part of HEINEKEN business.

Put Safety First! Is our number one company behaviour. As we strive for a zero accident environment, we continue to invest in training programmes designed to promote an increased awareness of behavioural safety. We continue to re-design some of our production processes on an on-going basis, as we eventually improve and work towards being best in class. Keeping our employees healthy and safe remains our top priority.


Growing with Communities

Our business brings us into close contact with thousands of consumers and stakeholders daily. Where we have the opportunity to help communities prosper, we do so. Its good business and it can support us in the long-term.

Our focus is on seeking long-term community investments through partnerships that are aligned with our business and sustainability agenda. We actively support communities in the field of alcohol misuse, education, employment, social welfare and the arts.

Significant contributions are also made to local tourism through profile building, support to local public houses, festival and sports sponsorships, many of which are conducted in local communities throughout Ireland.

In 2017, we launched an initiative with GIY (Grow it Yourself) to create green urban growing spaces that have a positive social, environmental and economic impact on communities. The programme was ‘rooted’ among our employees with 200 volunteers helping to create three Star Community Gardens in Cork, Dublin and Waterford. We supported 10 groups with seed funding to bring urban growing to local communities. Year one of our ‘Growing with our Communities’ was a great success – and we will continue to nurture this programme further in 2018.