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  • by Trevor Loveday

Japanese drinks maker poised to bring water education programme to UK

The UK arm of Japanese whisky producer, Suntory, is to launch its established programme for teaching families the importance of water as a precious resource for the first time in the UK. Suntory Beverage & Food GBI will be working with Severn Rivers Trust to deliver the programme through a partnership with the charity formed last year.

Mizuiku was launched in Japan by Suntory Holdings in 2004 to educate young generations in where their water comes from and in the significance of the forests that nurture it. The programme has since expanded to Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, France, China, Spain and now the UK, with tailored initiatives for each country. According to Suntory, 458,700 people across the world have taken part.

Suntory Beverage & Food GBI will be focussing on the outdoor part of the Mizuiku programme which is designed to provide participants with interactive, hands-on experiences that help them appreciate the importance of natural water sources. The sessions will be run by Severn Rivers Trust -and will highlight the critical link between the River Severn and the nature surrounding it.

The UK Mizuiku programme will start at the end of May and run until October. Families will be able to book onto free sessions at five different riverside locations: Lydney, Diglis, Warwick, Shrewsbury and Newtown. The River Severn and its tributaries run close to where Suntory’s factory in Coleford, Gloucestershire. Educational resources will be free to download from the Suntory website where families can also sign up to the events once registration opens.

The Mizuiku programme is part of Suntory’s Sustainable Water Philosophy which was established to address water issues in each of its regions where it operates. Suntory said the programme reinforces two important Japanese values held within the business group: Growing for Good, – the idea that the company and its employees continue growing towards a better world; and Giving Back to Society – reinvesting what the business earns not only in the company, but by contributing to society.

Suntory hopes the start of the official Mizuiku programme in the UK will help pave the way for future projects that educate even more people on the importance of water in years to come.

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