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The Impact of Coca Cola in India’s Water Supply

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The impact of Coca Cola in India’s water supply

Juan Mateus

New Jersey City University

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Business Ethics

April 6 2017


“Coca-cola vs India’s water supply”

Juan Mateus, Business Ethics

This research essay is to address the fraudulent business activities that coca cola has undertaken in Indian water supply and how issues of water pollution affect India as a whole, from populations of the whole Indian nation, to city’s wealthy. This research undertakes and analysis how coca cola affects its host country of India and how it can improve the outcome of its activity’s by working close with the government and non-profits and also by using less of Indian ground water and by polluting less, Coca cola can significantly improve ties with a already bitter relationship with India’s lower class environmental conscious citizens and farmers being depleted of this precious blue gold called water. Also at the end of this report, in the appendix is a graph that highlights the water wasting process that coca cola uses in its plants in India.

Table of content

  • Cover Letter
  • Abstract
  • TOC
  • Intro
  • Body
  • Conclusion
  • References
  • Appendix


The coca cola company following a series of disastrous water management failures in India, one of Coca-Cola’s most important markets, is desperate to rebuild its reputation by claiming ‘water neutrality. But this idea is unrealistic, and does nothing to benefit the Indian communities that suffer from the depleted aquifers it pumps from. The Coca-Cola Company is planning to announce that it is close to replenishing all the water it uses “back to communities and nature”(Geense, M, 2014)  by the end of 2017, well ahead of schedule.

The campaigners that have closely scrutinized Coca-Cola’s operations in India for over a decade, I find the coca colas company’s assertions on balancing water use to be misleading.

The company’s track record of managing water resources in and around its bottling operations is very unstable, and the announcement is a public relations publicity stunt designed to image of manufacture a good a company that uses water sustainably, which I believe is far removed from the grim reality we are currently facing


The path for Coca-Cola to take upon its big and huge ambitious water conservation programs globally stsrts from its experience in India, as the company has been the target of communities across the country holding it responsible for creating lots of water shortages around all of India and pollution in its surrounding areas and towns.

The Coca cola company has faced and still is experiencing deep crisis in India due to their mismanagement of water resources in their plant, including

  • The complete closure of their bottling plant by government authorities in Kerala in 2005,
  • The full closure of its 15 year old plant in Varanasi last year,
  • Refusal by the government authorities to allow a built expansion plant to operate in Varanasi.
  • The proposed plant in Uttarakhand cancelled in April 2014,
  • The complete withdraw of the land allocated for a new bottling plant by the government in Tamil Nadu due to farmers protests in April 2015.( Chaudary,A 2014)

Coca-Cola’s operations in Jaipur in India are also now used as a case study in colleges and universities on the company’s profound impact on water resources.

The suggestion that the world’s largest beverage company can become “water neutral”, as Coca-Cola has suggested, is near impossible and deceptive, as the India Resource Center has pointed out in the past. It is not currently possible for a company whose primary raw material is water, to have ‘neutral’ impact on water resources especially in india(William , 2016).

Being the world’s largest beverage company is a disservice to the world,but pollution the water supply india and without admission of the massive impact the coca cola company has on water resources, there can be no genuine solution with Coca-Cola on water management.

The company’s claims of having a neutral impact on water resources are misleading for two principal reasons. First of all the water issues are local in their impact. When Coca-Cola extracts water from a depleted aquifer in Varanasi or Jaipur, the impacts affect the local communities and farmers that depend upon it to meet their water needs.

Refreshing an aquifer many hundreds of miles far from the point of extraction, as Coca-Cola has often done to ‘balance’ their water use, it has no bearing on the health of the local aquifer which Coca-Cola depletes through its bottling operations, not even the privations suffered by those who depend upon it.



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