Konica Minolta South Africa and Food & Trees for Africa - One year on and growing strong

| 25 February 2015

In 2013, line with its promise to operate in the most sustainable way – from an environmental, social and economic perspective – Bidvest company, Konica Minolta South Africa, planted five hundred trees in the impoverished Lawley Township in Gauteng. This undertaking was done through the company's association with South Africa's national greening and food gardening social enterprise, Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA).

The five hundred River Bush Willow trees were planted in the Lawley township, under the FTFA's award winning and Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) Trees for Homes initiative. A recent study from FTFA has reported that four hundred and forty of the five hundred trees are still surviving, an average 88 percent survival rate, after the completion of the one year evaluation. In addition to improving the environment in which these residents live, the surviving trees will sequestrate an estimated 162 tonnes of carbon dioxide, thus contributing to the mitigation of climate change over the next 15 years, according to the VCS.

Eight disadvantaged residents of Lawley had received training as community educators and went door to door to the respective homes where the trees were planted, raising awareness about climate change and the benefits of planting trees. These community educators then worked with FTFA to evaluate the growth and success of the trees over a period of 12 months. Sipho Mathe, the FTFA ecoprenuer in charge of the project, also visited houses to confirm that the evaluations were valid.

"The survival rate was very impressive and has met the expected FTFA standards, despite a number of challenges, most notably the frost as temperatures plummeted in the winter to a low of 1 degree Celcius. This initiative has promoted new greening activities in the community, such as the planting flowers and the beautification of the area by homeowners," said Mathe.

He continued: "FTFA would like to thank Konica Minolta South Africa for the generous contribution, continuous support and commitment towards a more sustainable and lower carbon future for all. The charitable donation of the five hundred trees with an 88 percent survival rate is contributing towards a greener future. It has also created environmental awareness and the trees that grow greatly improve the neighbourhood."

Ritchi Smith, marketing co-ordinator for Konica Minolta South Africa said: "The company is dedicated to highlighting the essential role trees play in sustainable development and the livelihoods of people and their environment, now and for the future. We are delighted that the trees in Lawley are doing so well and look forward to many more greening initiatives."

About Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe


Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe GmbH, based in Langenhagen, Germany, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Inc., Tokyo, Japan. Konica Minolta enables its clients to champion the digital era: with its unique imaging expertise and data processing capabilities, Konica Minolta creates relevant solutions for its customers and solves issues faced by society. As a provider of comprehensive IT services, Konica Minolta delivers consultancy and services to optimise business processes with workflow automation. The company further offers its customers solutions and managed services in the field of IT infrastructure and IT security as well as cloud environments. With regard to its office printing solutions, "IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Print Transformation 2020 Vendor Assessment" stated that Konica Minolta is "recognised globally as a leader in print transformation". As a strong partner for the professional printing market, Konica Minolta offers business consulting, state-of-the-art technology and software and has established itself as the production printing market leader for more than a decade in Europe (InfoSource). Its Business Innovation Centre in London and four R & D laboratories in Europe enable Konica Minolta to bring innovation forward by collaborating with its customers as well as academic, industrial and entrepreneurial partners. For its innovative service approach that complements their devices perfectly, Konica Minolta was awarded the prestigious ‘"Buyers Lab PaceSetter Award for Serviceability and Support 2020/2021" by Keypoint Intelligence. Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe is represented by subsidiaries and distributors in more than 80 countries in Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. With approximately 10,000 employees (as of April 2020), Konica Minolta Europe earned net sales of over 2.34 billion in financial year 2019/2020.


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