Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
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Bacardi’s BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Distillery: A Pioneer in Sustainability and Wildlife Conservation


Bacardi, a family-owned spirits business, has been awarded the Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) certification for its BOMBAY SAPPHIRE® gin distillery in Hampshire, England, in recognition of its commitment to local wildlife and biodiversity. This makes it the first spirits production facility in the UK to receive this certification and currently the only Certified Silver program in the UK, due to its dedication to preserving local bat populations and a section of the River Test that flows through the property.
The conservation initiatives include the placement of 26 bat and hibernation boxes, bat access tiles, and numerous cavities and gaps in the distillery walls. To boost insect populations, which serve as a food source for bats, bee nesting boxes have been set up and wildflowers have been planted. The BOMBAY SAPPHIRE distillery also serves as a training ground for budding ecologists, teaching them how to use bat detection and recording equipment.
Along the River Test banks, which has been designated a ‘Site of Special Scientific Interest’ since 1991, more wildflowers have been planted and fish and eel passes have been built to facilitate greater river life movement.
Furthermore, the distillery participates in a national initiative known as the Anglers’ Riverfly Monitoring Initiative. This involves a local community of volunteers from the Watercress and Winterbournes Landscape Partnership Scheme who monitor the river’s invertebrates. This research offers crucial insights into the river’s health, aiding in tracking and monitoring any changes over time.
“The home of BOMBAY SAPPHIRE is incredibly special – not only for the beautiful gin we produce there, but for its surrounding Hampshire countryside and nature,” said Rodolfo Nervi, VP, Global Safety, Quality & Sustainability, Bacardi.
“We put protecting that environment front and center when we designed and built the distillery nearly 10 years ago, and we continue that work to this day, prioritizing doing the right thing to have a positive impact on the planet for future generations.”
BOMBAY SAPPHIRE procures all of its 10 botanicals from suppliers who are 100 percent certified for sustainability, reflecting the brand’s longstanding commitment to sustainable practices. The distillery, which opened in 2014, was awarded an ‘outstanding’ rating by BREEAM, a leading environmental assessment body for buildings.
The BOMBAY SAPPHIRE distillery is among several facilities in the company’s portfolio that have received the WHC certification. This includes Bacardi in Puerto Rico, home to the world’s largest premium rum distillery and the globally acclaimed rum BACARDĺ, and the Bacardi Bottling Corporation site in Jacksonville, Florida, both of which have previously been awarded WHC certifications.
The BACARDĺ facility in Cataño, Puerto Rico has been re-certified three times for its efforts in creating pollinator gardens that safeguard bats, butterflies, and bees. It remains the only project on the island with WHC certification.
The Bacardi facility in Jacksonville has achieved re-certification five times for its conservation efforts, which include the installation of nesting boxes for Eastern Blue Birds and native bat acoustic monitoring to enhance local biodiversity. In 2020, Bacardi in Jacksonville was honored with the inaugural Ibis Award from WHC, an accolade designed to acknowledge a program that has shown resilience and progress in conservation despite workplace changes, quarantines, and shutdowns.
“Companies achieving WHC Conservation Certification are environmental leaders, voluntarily managing their lands to support sustainable ecosystems and the communities that surround them,” said Margaret O’Gorman, President, Wildlife Habitat Council.
“We applaud the BOMBAY SAPPHIRE distillery for its dedication to restoring local waterways, providing shelter for important bat populations and removing invasive species. These incredible efforts support the biodiversity of the ecosystems surrounding this site while also benefitting the greater community.”
To know more about Bacardi and its ESG commitments, click here.