Kellogg is Reducing Water Usage

Around the globe, freshwater resources are under pressure from climate change, population growth, industrial and agricultural uses, and aging or inefficient infrastructure. Increasingly, businesses and communities are recognizing the critical importance of preserving and protecting water supplies. At Kellogg, we respect the human right to water as defined by the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and General Assembly. For some time, we’ve been reducing our water use in the communities where we source ingredients and make our foods.

“While all Kellogg manufacturing facilities have water-efficiency goals and are implementing water-saving initiatives, we pay extra close attention to our water use in these area of high stress,” said Chief Sustainability Officer Amy Senter. “We’re taking unique actions in these locations to address water risks.”


Our global water risk assessment allows us to evaluate physical water stress, regulation, usage and business risk. It evaluates sites from two perspectives: an internal rating based on data from each site, and an external rating of core indicators from the World Resources Institute Aqueduct water risk mapping tool. According to the most recent findings, 39% of our facilities are in high-water-stress regions. We’re taking unique actions in these sites to reduce our use of water and address these risks.

  • Our plant in Mexicali, Mexico has reused 100% of its wastewater since 2015.
  • In Omaha, Nebraska, U.S., we’re reusing condensate and recirculating chilled water to reduce our use of city water.
  • By installing 40 water meters in the facility, our Botany, Australia plant has halved its water use in the past two years. The meters also quickly highlight issues such as leaking valves that might otherwise not have been noticed as quickly.
  • Improvements in the manufacturing process to reuse cooling water allowed our Wrexham, U.K. facility to save 4 million litres of water in 2018.
  • Across our operations, we’re improving our processes and modifying equipment to further reduce our water use.

Our Grand Rapids facility supplemented the well water consumption of their process equipment cooling with an outdoors evaporative spray system. This project reduced the site’s absolute water consumption in more than 60% compared to their 2015 water use. Between 2015 and 2019, we reduced our water normalized water use by 15.1 %, achieving our 2020 target of 15%[1] one year ahead of schedule. To date, have implemented water reuse projects in 15.4% of our plants and we continue to work towards our goal of 25% by end of 2020.

In 2019, we introduced our more ambitious Kellogg’s® Better Days commitment to achieve a 30% reduction in water use in facilities in high-water-stress regions by the end of 2030. Doing so is one part of our overall commitment to create Better Days for 3 billion people by the end of 2030.  Another aspect of this goal is to support 1 million farmers by the end of 2030, which also is reducing water use.

Kellogg, the United Stated Department of Agriculture (USDA) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) teamed up in 2015 on a five-year program to implement conservation practices on 63,000 acres of farmland in the Saginaw Bay Watershed in Michigan. The Saginaw Bay is an important drinking water source for more than 1 million people and the habitat for more than 90 fish species and countless animals. The Saginaw Bay is also home to the soft white winter wheat that’s grown to make Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats and Raisin Bran cereals.

The USDA crop advisers trained farmers on practices that boost soil health, support biodiversity and address water quality concerns. As a result, local farmers have prevented nearly 3,500 tons of soil runoff (or 250 dump trucks) from entering the Saginaw Bay. To build upon this success, Kellogg and TNC in 2019 launched a Pay for Performance program to enable other Michigan farmers to adopt these practices. In just one year, the program expanded to an additional 4,000 acres, which is anticipated to prevent another 328 tons of runoff from entering the bay.

We’ll continue reporting on our efforts to reduce water use in our 2020 Corporate Responsibility Report.



[1] From a 2015 baseline

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