Annual Report

Environmental management

Responsible management of water

As we are working in an environment where there is a growing demand for industrial water, responsible water management is one of the cornerstones sustaining our environmental policy. Viscofan's production process requires the use of water, mainly in phases of the process that involve washing the casings. In general terms, water is obtained from different sources - surface or underground water, municipal supply - depending on the location of the production plant: Once the water has been used, the production plants have water treatment plants to treat it before being poured into freshwater or municipal treatment plants.

 When managing the impacts related to water use, the Viscofan Group has identified key management indicators with a double purpose: optimise water consumption at the company subsidiaries whenever possible and improve the water purification process with a view to reducing the pollution load thereof.

Consumption and Capture

A baseline of 100 was set for the 2016 water usage intensity ratio (m3/millions of metres produced) to track the intensity of our water consumption in the following years.

In 2018, the intensity ratio increased due mainly to the start-up of plant 4 in Cáseda, Spain, which has continued in 2019 with new production modules under the new production technology and the increased production capacity in Koteks, Serbia. In order to increase the optimisation of water, in 2018 a project was carried out for greater water reuse in China, bringing the total water used to 26,635 m3, although the results were not as expected and it was decided to seek out other optimisation options, bringing the cubic metres reused in 2019 to 1,069.

The number of cubic metres of water reused will also be reduced in 2019 compared to 2018 due to the decision to improve the quality of the discharge at the Suzhou (China) plant.

The evolution of the ratio of intensity of water consumption and reuse is as follows:

2019 2018 2017
Water consumption in m3 /Metres produced Base 100. Year 2015 107 106 97
  2019 2018 2017
Water reused in m3 1.069 26.635 9.510
* Does not include Transform Pack or Globus
Water consumption by source in m3 2019 2018 2017
Surface water 3.849.469 3.755.026 3.301.733
Ground water 2.643.301 2.636.088 2.443.000
Local water supply 2.947.574 3.021.961 2.809.491
Rainwater 0 0 0
Waste water 0 0 0
TOTAL 9.440.345 9.413.076 8.554.224
* Does not include Transform Pack or Globus
Water consumption by source in % 2019 2018 2017
Surface water 41% 40% 39%
Ground water 28% 28% 28%
Local water supply 31% 32% 33%
Rainwater 0% 0% 0%
Waste water 0% 0% 0%
TOTAL 100% 100% 100%
* Does not include Transform Pack or Globus


Additionally, Viscofan is aware that proper water management also includes correctly purifying its wastewater and minimising the impact of its activities on the environment. Hence, it promotes investment in water treatment plants in its manufacturing facilities, where treatment of water makes it possible to improve the quality of discharges. Factories that treat 100% of the water are: Cáseda (Spain), Zacapu (Mexico), Koteks (Serbia), Itu (Brazil), Pando (Uruguay) and Suzhou (China).

To improve waste management, several projects are being carried out in different Group plants. In Cáseda (Spain) the project to expand the wastewater treatment plant has been completed with an investment of 1.6 million euros, and in Koteks (Serbia) the expansion of this facility is underway. With these investments, the Group is improving the quality of the waste and gaining in reliability and assurance in the management of the same:

Wastewater broken down by destination is as follows:

  2019 2018 2017
Surface freshwater 4.354.863 4.279.567 3.930.315
Local treatment plant 3.405.950 3.387.789 3.300.921
TOTAL 7.760.813 7.667.357 7.231.236
Water discharge by source in % 2019 2018 2017
Surface freshwater 56% 56% 54%
Local treatment plant 44% 44% 46%
TOTAL 100% 100% 100%
* Does not include Transform Pack or Globus

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