Brita, the nation’s largest water filtration brand, is joining UC Berkeley in a combined effort to increase campus sustainability efforts while offering students and the broader campus community healthier beverage choices.
The 10-year, $4 million partnership will focus on championing and extending the campus’ innovative “Refills not Landfills” program. The program, launched as part of the University of California system’s plan to achieve zero waste by 2020, is an effort to encourage students and the campus community to drink from reusable containers.
The partnership is a first of its kind for Brita. Brita has previously been involved in promoting sustainability on campuses through a partnership with the nonprofit REVERB and its Campus Consciousness Tour, but this relationship marks the first time Brita has worked with a specific university on a sustainability and student health program. Additionally, this is the fourth campus-wide partnership through UC Berkeley’s University Partnership Program (UPP), which works collectively across the university to develop comprehensive relationships that align with university’s mission and values.
“The UC Berkeley-Brita partnership provides meaningful engagement opportunities with our campus community throughout the academic year,” said Solly Fulp, executive director of University Business Partnerships & Services. “The dynamics of a local relationship with Brita creates exceptional possibilities that prioritize health, wellness and sustainability with our students, faculty, staff and alumni.”
Brita will provide the campus with complimentary Brita products such as reusable bottles, as well as significant sponsorship to campus groups that support campus sustainability goals and champion healthy living. Brita products will also be sold at a variety of campus outlets.
“This is the kind of partnership that gets us excited,” said Ed Huber, general manager of Brita. “The students and administrators at UC Berkeley have set out, with no prompting from Brita, to cut back on bottled water waste and encourage healthier beverage choices. The fact that the Brita brand can play an important role in advancing a goal like this is exciting and a bit humbling – and speaks to the shared values between our two organizations. If, together, we can make the students and campus a little healthier, we’ll have accomplished something really important.”
The partnership kicks off with the start of the 2016-2017 academic year. Details of the partnership include:
- Monetary support to eight campus departments and organizations each year.
- Brita product donations to campus ever year, including distribution of Brita products in every university owned residence hall.
- Support of the Refills not Landfills program.
- Replacement of outdated water refill stations, as well as installation of new stations in high-need, high-traffic campus buildings.
- Brita products sold at the ASUC Student Union, Cal Dining locations, Recreation Center and other campus locations.
- Establishment of an on-campus Brita filter-recycling program with Cal Zero Waste.
“Cal Zero Waste is truly excited to partner with Brita in helping our campus advance our innovative “Refills not Landfills” program,” said Lin King, manager of Cal Zero Waste. “Their contribution will make an incredible impact in reducing the use of plastic bottles and help our campus reach our UC zero waste by 2020 goal.”