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  1. 1. COCA-COLA INDIA'S CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY STRATEGY Issues: » Analyze the CSR strategy adopted by Coca-Cola India. » Understand the issues and challenges faced by Coca-Cola with regard to its sustainability initiatives in India. » Analyze the underlying reasons for the growing criticism against Coca-Cola in India and explore ways in which the company can address this issue. » Understand the concept of greenwashing and discuss and debate whether Coca-Cola is serious about its water sustainability initiatives. Introduction On February 18, 2008, leading beverage company in India, The Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt. Ltd (Coca-Cola India), was awarded the Golden Peacock award4 for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for the several community initiatives it had taken and its efforts toward conservation of water. The award recognizes companies for their commitment toward business, their employees, local communities, and the society. Atul Singh (Singh), CEO, CocaCola India, said, "Coca-Cola India has always placed high value on good citizenship and has undertaken several initiaWe are gratified to receive this global award and are humbled at being recognized for the little contributions that we have been able to make to preserve and protect the environment and toward community development." Coca-Cola India was established as the Indian subsidiary of the US-based Coca-Cola Company (Coca-Cola) in 1993. As of 2008, Coca-Cola India had 24 bottling operations of its own and 25 bottling operations owned by its franchisees.In addition to beverage brands like Coke, Fanta, Sprite, etc., Coca-Cola India had a strong local cola brand Thums Up, the Kinley brand of mineral water, energy drinks, and powdered concentrates.tives for community development and inclusive growth. Keeping in mind the fact that it was one of the largest beverage companies in India, Coca-Cola India said it had made CSR an integral part of its corporate agenda. According to the company, it was aware of the environmental, social, and economic impact caused by a business of its scale and therefore it had taken up a wide range of initiatives to improve the quality of life of its customers, the workforce, and society at large. Since the company used large amounts of water and energy in its beverage production and tons of packaging material for its products, it had taken up several initiatives to act as a responsible
  2. 2. company and reduce its environmental impact, it said. In addition to water, energy, and sustainable packaging, Coca-Cola India also focused on several community initiatives in India as part of its social responsibility initiatives... Background Note The Coca-Cola drink, popularly referred to as 'Coke', is a kind of cola, a sweet carbonated drink containing caramel and other flavoring agents. It was invented by Dr. John Smith Pemberton (Pemberton) on May 8, 1886, at Atlanta, Georgia, in USA. The beverage was named Coca-Cola because at that time it contained extracts of Coca leaves and Kola nuts. Pemberton later sold the business to a group of businessmen, one of whom was Griggs Candler (Candler). By 1888, several cola brands were in the market competing against each other. Candler acquired these businesses from the other businessmen and established Coca-Cola in 1892... Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives in India Environmental Responsibility Initiatives Environmental responsibility was a key aspect of Coca-Cola India's CSR initiatives. Since CocaCola India was involved in beverage production, its operations affected the environment in many ways such as through excessive levels of water consumption, wastewater discharge, high energy consumption, discharge of effluents, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions due to the use of refrigeration, vending machines, air conditioning equipment, etc... The 5 Pillar Growth Strategy In August 2007, Coca-Cola India launched a 5 pillar growth strategy to strengthen its relationship with India... Criticisms Though Coca-Cola India claimed that it had taken several such efforts, it continued to attract criticism from several quarters. The company was censured for depleting groundwater tables, leaving the local communities with no access to drinking water and water for farming which was their primary source of income... Coca-Cola India's Response
  3. 3. Coca-Cola opened an exclusive website,, which addressed the allegations related to India and other countries. In another official statement, Coca-Cola rebutted the charges against its bottling plant at Plachimada, Kerala. The company said the plant was not responsible for the depletion of the underground water table. It quoted a study conducted in October 2002 by Dr. R.N. Athvale, emeritus scientist at the National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI), which had concluded that there was no field evidence of overexploitation of the groundwater reserves in the area surrounding the plant... Outlook As of February 2008, Coca-Cola India had carried out its CSR activities across 45 bottling plants at an annual spend of Rs. 40 to 50 million on activities such as water conservation management, health, and education. By February 2008, the company had installed around 350 rainwater harvesting projects in several states of India... Exhibits Exhibit I: Criticisms against Coca-Cola India Exhibit II: Coca-Cola's Global Water Conversation Goals Exhibit III: Coca-Cola's Global Community Watershed Program Exhibit IV: Coca-Cola India's 5 Pillar Growth Strategy Exhibit V: A Photograph of Mass Demonstration against Coca-Cola at Mehdiganj on March 30, 2008 Exhibit VI: List of Awards and Recognition Received by Coca-Cola India Exhibit VII: Print Ad of Coca-Cola India's 'Little Drops of Joy' Communication Campaign SUMMARY This case is about Coca-Cola's corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives in India. It details the activities taken up by Coca-Cola India's management and employees to contribute to the society and community in which the company operates. Coca-Cola India being one of the largest beverage companies in India, realized that CSR had to be an integral part of its corporate agenda. According to the company, it was aware of the environmental, social, and economic impact caused by a business of its scale and therefore it had decided to implement a wide range of initiatives to improve the quality of life of its customers, the workforce, and society at large.
  4. 4. However, the company came in for severe criticism from activists and environmental experts who charged it with depleting groundwater resources in the areas in which its bottling plants were located, thereby affecting the livelihood of poor farmers, dumping toxic and hazardous waste materials near its bottling facilities, and discharging waste water into the agricultural lands of farmers. Moreover, its allegedly unethical business practices in developing countries led to its becoming one of the most boycotted companies in the world. Notwithstanding the criticisms, the company continued to champion various initiatives such as rainwater harvesting, restoring groundwater resources, going in for sustainable packaging and recycling, and serving the communities where it operated. Coca-Cola planned to become water neutral in India by 2009 as part of its global strategy of achieving water neutrality. However, criticism against the company refused to die down. Critics felt that Coca-Cola was spending millions of dollars to project a 'green' and 'environment-friendly' image of itself, while failing to make any change in its operations. They said this was an attempt at greenwashing as CocaCola's business practices in India had tarnished its brand image not only in India but also globally. The case discusses the likely challenges for Coca-Cola India as it prepares to implement its new CSR strategy in the country. ANALYSIS This case is a fraud case over corporate social responsibility according to this case there was actually a fraud moving around the whole, affecting many innocents for no reason. This sector belongs from the corporate fraud and therefore affected much of its part. This was a very strong p[product so it required no mistake as if a mistake occur it would affect the whole economy. Earlier the drink was enjoyed by everyone but soon after when the facts were revealed that this drink involves the toxicity and a dirty water ingredient people started to declare it as a fraud that was being done by the company.There only mistake was the place of the bottling area which was affected due to the dirt in the water because of agriculture waste and dirty rainwater. Their idea and the rectification of their mistake were very important for their business. As it not only bring their business back to its place but also bring it to its real place. The rectification involved a lot of their money but after that they were able to bring their name back in the corporate world. The installation of the rain water harvesting projects defiantly brought them to what were they. RECOMMENDATION  The company should install large projects with many of the employees so that the work can be in many of the efficient manner.  Ø Their should always be a nutritionist present in the company who would be knowing about the ingredients.  Ø The company should also move their packing industry away from the rivers and lakes so that it doesn’t affect the bottling.  Ø They should start more campaigns to prove that their products are free from dirt and are safe for enjoying.
  5. 5.  Ø A diversified viewpoint should be introduced to bring the company to the prosperity. Evaluation Until now we evaluate that the company COCA COLA was a very demanding firm for the lovers of coke but all because a little mistake they came down the lane. Their bad thing for the company was that they didn’t notice the mistake and then when they came across the big trouble they have to pay a large for the rectification This case is actually a brilliant example of corporate social responsibility affecting the firm and the consumers.