Salford’s Kingsland Drinks Group (KDG) is embarking on an updated and upweighted sustainability strategy, titled Thirsty Earth. The Thirsty Earth programme will drive the firm’s sustainability agenda, which seeks to create a better society and drinks industry for all, now and in the future, and will be integral in achieving the company’s business goals.
Initiatives – to be announced in early 2022 – will be centred on the three core pillars of Sustainability; Society, which focuses on charity, wellbeing, inclusion, and equality; Environment, which looks at energy and emissions, waste, renewable energy, recycling and reuse, and Economy, which includes responsible sourcing and ongoing investment. In the future, Kingsland Drinks Group intends for the Thirsty Earth Foundation to become a registered charity which raises awareness and funds to invest in initiatives which have a positive impact on society.
Thirsty Earth activity will include a series of long-term projects linked to the UN’s sustainable development goals, each with clear and measurable targets to safeguard society, the environment, and the economic health of the industry in which it works.
The Thirsty Earth Programme will be delivered by Kingsland Drinks Group members – having become an employee-owned business in July this year – and made a part of the fabric of the business and day-to-day operations.
Andy Sagar, Executive Chairman of Kingsland Drinks Group, comments: “We have always strived as a business to take the lead with a fresh approach in the drinks industry. As we have global reach with partner producers, suppliers, and customers all over the world, it is imperative we continuously improve our sustainability footprint both in our community and in the drinks industry as a whole.
“We have always placed sustainability at the heart of our operations and now with Thirsty Earth and the collective power of our employee owners, we’re taking it to the next level. Our investment and business development in recent years have focused on sustainability and we’re proud of the industry leading achievements we’ve made already. Although we are in challenging times, it’s important we are not complacent, and we continue to show commitment with real goals that will help make a positive difference to society and the environment in the years ahead.
“Thirsty Earth will be crucial to how we meet the UN’s sustainable development goals, but it also encapsulates the vision and realisation of what we’ve been working towards for a long time. It’s vital we do not negatively impact current or future generations, and instead become a force for positive change and our mantra – a better society and drinks industry for all, now and in the future – is at the heart of every decision we make.”
In recent months, the firm has actively backed brands that are working towards a more positive industry and protecting the planet; The Hidden Sea, an Australian wine brand, which Kingsland Drinks manages for the UK on and off trade market, removes plastic from the world’s oceans with the bold aim of removing one billion plastic bottles by 2030.
Notably, the firm has established conscious premium drinks company Ten Locks, with Becky Davies leading the curation and development of a portfolio of purpose-led spirits brands striving for positive change.
Sagar continues: “The company has grown and diversified in recent years, and we’re incredibly proud to be a significant local employer. By constantly evolving our infrastructure and developing our capabilities we have in turn, grown our headcount and established ourselves as an employee-owned business. It’s an exciting time to be part of an incredible workforce powering a drinks business with a fresh approach, capable of true positive change.”
Kingsland Drinks Group – which includes Ten Locks – made a move to being an employee-owned business in July 2021. The move builds on Kingsland Drinks Group’s people-centric mindset and follows a period of significant investment in capabilities and capacity.
The company is currently undergoing a recruitment drive with a focus on roles in production and engineering at HQ in Irlam.
Kingsland Drinks Group was the first company to import wine into the UK in bulk, and utilise flexi-containers, a method that is now industry standard. It was also the first business to utilise inland waterways to transport bulk wine from port to site, saving large amounts of carbon and reducing road miles. With over 120 million litres packed last year alone, this results in an enormous carbon saving on bottled at source products, removing the need to transport glass and other packaging materials around the world.