Rivers around the United States are several thousand pounds lighter of trash after more than 450 employees from Keurig Green Mountain, Inc. (Keurig), a leader in specialty coffee and innovative single serve brewing systems, took to the water this summer for the company's 13th annual river cleanup events. Keurig’s Brewing A Better World® efforts around restoring waterways is done in partnership with National River Cleanup®, an initiative of American Rivers, the national river conservation organization.
From April through August, Keurig employees from five of the company’s sites took part in river cleanup, river restoration, and park maintenance activities. While the annual clean-up for some is about heading to their local rivers to remove trash and debris, in other locations, Keurig volunteers are doing their part to build rain gardens, restore parks, river paths, and community trails. In total, over 450 Keurig volunteers removed 16,000 lbs. of trash and metal, along with 154 tires. They also planted 100 native shrubs and spread over 100 cubic yards of mulch.
These much-anticipated annual events with American Rivers are part of Keurig's Community Action for Employees (CAFE) program, which gives employees the opportunity to spend up to 52-hours a year volunteering during work hours. Keurig and its employees are committed to giving back to the communities where they work and play, with 55-percent of its total workforce participating in a volunteer program in fiscal year 2016. Keurig employee volunteers gave over 56,000 hours to a wide range of activities last year, such as distributing food at food banks and cleaning up rivers.
“Every great cup of coffee starts with clean water. Our employees know this by heart, which makes our annual water restoration event one of our most popular volunteer efforts. Employees look forward to working with their colleagues to give back in the community where we live, work, and play,” said Monique Oxender, Keurig’s chief sustainability officer.
In 2016, National River Cleanup® mobilized nearly 48,000 volunteers to remove 3.4 million pounds of trash from rivers and streams across the country. Keurig’s support for National River Cleanup started in 2004 with a single cleanup event in Vermont, and has grown to a multi-month program of cleanup events taking place in Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, Vermont, and Massachusetts.
“We all need clean water and healthy rivers. Cleanups are a great way to help the rivers that sustain us and connect people with their local waterways. We’re grateful for the 13 years of support from Keurig Green Mountain and thrilled we can work together to make a difference in so many communities across the country,” said Lowell George, National River Cleanup Manager at American Rivers.