“Everyone has oceans to fly, if they have the heart to do it. Is it reckless? Maybe. But what do dreams know of boundaries?” – Amelia Earhart
The lockdown period, as challenging as it was, gave the Belu team a moment to pause and reflect on what our heart is, what dreams we have for the business and what boundaries we want to push, break and shatter. Inspired by the courage of communities and fighting spirit of people all over the world, we knew the next ten years for Belu needed to put our people and environment-first ethics front and centre.
With this in mind, we are excited to share the next chapter with everyone: Belu is a drinks business that puts people and the environment first. Our purpose goes beyond our products, by 2030 we will change the way the world sees water.
This is our invitation and promise to every person who chooses to buy us, it is core to every product and service we sell and all of our profits are invested in pursuit of it.
You can read our full purpose invitation in the image on the right.
There are small actions you can take to join us on this journey:
- Go for low carbon and low waste. Choose filtration as part of a sustainable water service for customers and guests. Without a doubt, this is the solution with the lowest possible carbon emissions and waste.
- Go for UK-produced, both water and packaging. Commit to buying or serving water that has not been shipped from overseas.
- Go for packaging that has been made from recycled materials that can be easily recycled in the UK. We have more capability to recycle plastic and glass than aluminium. It is a false environmental economy to ship our recycling and waste to other countries.
- Go for lightweight. The lighter the product, the lower the carbon footprint in transit. Lighter trucks use less fuel, less fuel consumption equals lower vehicle emissions.
- Together, let’s choose to value water. Challenge yourself to think about what happens when we have too much or too little. Then commit to doing something to make a difference.
We know recovering from the pandemic is the priority for everyone, be that health, connections, or a business. What we also know is that there is an urgency to act, for people and planet, more people will die because of climate change if we fail to respond with even the smallest change now; poor air quality, drought, floods, the list goes on.
“Water is essential not only to health, but also to poverty reduction, food security, peace and human rights, ecosystems and education.” – United Nations
We’ll keep you updated on our progress aligned to the UN Global Goals 6 (sustainable water access), 12 (consumption and responsible production) and 13 (climate action), as well as the principles of a circular economy.
So where are we now?
In 2020, we reduced the carbon intensity of our products and business by 34% versus 2019. We have over 100 Belu Filter in Action customers, making the switch to the most sustainable water service is as easy as calling us. We’re diligent about any offsetting we do, the whole plant a tree thing is flawed, equally, hydro stations built over community settlements are a no-no for us. We focus on limiting our carbon emissions at source, it’s not easy but our partners are as committed to making a difference as we are.
Reuse, reduce, recycle, on the journey to a circular economy
Our products have allowed nearly 80 million bottles to be made into new Belu bottles, keeping glass and plastic in our supply chain and out of landfills and oceans. We’ll do everything we can to drive up the recycled content of our products and lead the way on this so there are no excuses across the drinks industry. We did it for plastic bottles after researching what the best response to the plastics challenge was. Guess what, it’s reusing plastic, 100% reuse that is. Our clear glass is 35% recycled material and 100% recyclable all over the UK. Our green glass has the highest recycled content at over 70%. We’re light weighting our products and they are made in the UK, not shipped in from overseas.
Our net profit
We give WaterAid our net profit, over £5 million so far. Our commitment to UN Global Goal 6 of ensuring availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all remains unwavering. The reality is it’s unlikely we’ll return to profitable trading for a couple of years, and we’ll be up front about it, therefore, £100,000 will be the minimum yearly contribution we make to WaterAid, whether we’re profitable or not and we publish full audited accounts so you will always see what our annual profit and contribution is.
Team Belu leads with heart, we’re unashamed of our approach to business. After all, there are oceans to fly and dreams to fulfil – for you, for us, for the planet.