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National Award for Environmental Excellence® - Gold Award

The challenge

In September 2015, Diageo commissioned Keep Scotland Beautiful to carry out an environmental excellence audit to assess the local environmental quality of three of their Distillery Visitor Centres: Glenkinchie, Oban and Dalwhinnie.

Our approach

The audit focused on the first impressions of each of the centres for visitors both internally and externally, along with the overall visitor experience. The audit also reviewed the waste management processes and engagement with local communities to provide a benchmark for environmental excellence.

The audit was broken down into the five key elements of the award. This was assessed using a checklist of over 100 questions and included a detailed site inspection, a customer journey activity, and meetings with staff at each of the sites. Diageo achieved a total score of 2,681 out of a possible 3,000 at the three sites and were awarded the Gold level standard of the National Award for Environmental Excellence®.

Demonstration of good practice were highlighted in the following areas:

  • Concise and well implemented policies and procedures.
  • High standard of grounds maintenance which provided a very welcoming feel to all sites.
  • High standards of maintenance of internal and retail areas and efforts to improve waste infrastructure for staff and public.

The recycling procedures at the sites were also recognised, particularly the focus on zero waste in the operations process which is supported by onsite waste water processing systems.

Three minor areas for improvement were identified:

  • The need for litter bins to minimise the risk of litter.
  • The need for recycling bins to allow visitors to recycle their waste
  • The need to consider the location of smoking shelters, to help discourage cigarette litter.

The audit also reviewed the waste management processes and engagement with local communities to provide a benchmark for environmental excellence.

How we made a difference

Diageo was the first drinks manufacturer in Scotland to be assessed against the National Award for Environmental Excellence® and has therefore set a benchmark for this sector. While the three sites audited were diverse in their look and geographical location the overall standard at all was recorded as being exceptional.

The public experience of visiting was recognised as being interesting and enjoyable and along with the high standards set, through policies and practices, made these Diageo sites a role model for local environmental practice and community involvement. The National Award for Environmental Excellance recognises the efforts of Diageo's staff in achieving these high standards and positions their distilleries as top ‘green’ tourist attractions”

This award recognises our ongoing commitment to environmental quality and celebrates the efforts of all our people in striving for excellence in this crucial area of our business. The quality of Scotland’s environment is vital to the Scotch Whisky industry and Diageo is committed to sustainability in every aspect of our business

Ramsay Borthwick, Glenkinchie Distillery Manager

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