SAB to provide free water from brewery's spring in event of Day Zero
By Dave Chambers - Feb 9th 2018, 13:56
Free water bottled at Newlands brewery will be available at up to 300 shops in Cape Town if Day Zero arrives‚ executives at South African Breweries (SAB) said.
Ricardo Tadeu‚ SAB’s zone president for Africa‚ said the company expected to spend about R24m on what it had dubbed Project Rain.
It would involve filling 12-million "quart" beer bottles with pasteurised water from the brewery’s spring‚ and distributing them through large and small retailers.
Des Jacobs‚ SAB’s Western Cape regional director‚ said test runs were already being conducted at the brewery and bottling would begin in March.
If Day Zero arrived‚ SAB would work with the disaster management centre to send water supplies to parts of the city with the greatest need. The water would have a shelf life of 12 months.
While the water would be free‚ consumers would be charged a 90c deposit for each bottle.
Jacobs said the brewery hoped to speak to the Muslim Judicial Council about concerns that using beer bottles for water meant the contents would not be regarded as halaal. "We are making 100% sure there will be no alcohol residue in those bottles‚" he said.
But he was clear that beer bottles would not be available in schools‚ churches‚ mosques and hospitals‚ and said negotiations were under way with other companies to put water from the brewery into plastic bottles.
Western Cape premier Helen Zille tweeted after meeting Tadeu and Jacobs: "Excellent meeting on logistics of water distribution with SAB management @WorldOfBeer in the event of #DayZero. They have an agreement to distribute water‚ free‚ to 300 retailers across Cape Town. Adds 300 distribution points to city’s 200."
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