NIGERIA – Nigerian maker of Coca-Cola soft drinks, Nigerian Bottling Company, NBC has said it has eliminated use of ‘eco-unfriendly’ trucks considered to a threat to the ozone layer, a report by BeverageIndustryNews report.

The company stated that the trucks possibly posed a pollution risk to the atmosphere through the emission of ozone depleting fumes.

Speaking to newsmen in Port Harcourt, the Country CSR Manager, NBC, Mr Ekuma Eze noted that the decision was in line with the company’s continued implementation of its corporate social responsibility content.

He however maintained that the firm’s refrigerators had never contributed to the depletion of the ozone layer.

“Now, our trucks do not break down again. We have phased out trucks that are not friendly to the ozone layer.

Our refrigerators do not contribute to ozone layer depletion.

“We invest a lot in communities where we do our business and even beyond those communities.

The NBC has reduced carbon emission into the atmosphere and also invested in effluent treatment plants,” he said.

This ensures that the company is not contributing to the pollution of the communities it operates in, while promoting youth empowerment through award of scholarships and skills acquisition programmes.

He said that over 13,000 youths had benefitted from a scheme known as the Youth Empowered, an initiative designed by Coca-Cola Hellenic aimed at reducing the level of unemployment in Nigeria.

“We partner the government to ensure employment for the youth. That is the way we can ensure that the society is safe.

We have been involved in a management trainee programme, which is one of the best in the country.”

On quality of its main product Coca-Cola, Eze said: “In Nigeria, we are using natural sugar.

The difference is that the range of Coke we have in Nigeria is not as much as we have in America.

“But the truth is that Coke is the same everywhere in the world and our products in Nigeria are of the highest quality.

On counterfeiting, it is not a huge problem to us. We have a robust tracking and monitoring system to ensure that our products are not counterfeited.”

NBC’s Director, Legal/Public Affairs and Communications, Sade Morgan earlier announced that the firm had designated US$1.26 billion for investment in Nigeria from 2014 to 2023.

According to her, NBC has a total of nine plants in the country, and the one in Ikeja, Lagos remained the largest in Africa.