Konica Minolta Business Solutions Joins Tree-Planting Initiative

| 31 March 2019

Konica Minolta South Africa strengthens its commitment to environmental sustainability

Extended partnership with Food & Trees for Africa shows greater reach can effect positive change in more communities

Konica Minolta Business Solutions an authorised dealer of Konica Minolta South Africa, has joined the Konica Minolta South Africa tree-donation initiative and strengthened its commitment to environmental sustainability.

The initiative, now in its 11th year, is a partnership between Konica Minolta South Africa and Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA). FTFA is an organisation dedicated to addressing food security and environmental sustainability, while also emphasising education and skills training.

The tree-planting ceremony was held on 25 February 2019 at St Augustine's Primary School in Thaba Nchu, where pupils enthusiastically came together to plant 30 trees. The initiative served to educate pupils on the importance of protecting the environment and the benefits of minimising our carbon footprint.  This tree planting forms part of a 1,490-tree donation to the areas of Thaba Nchu, Botshabelo, Mokwena Village, Selosesha and Kagisanong.  

Principal Nthabiseng Rachael Motheane was excited that her school had been chosen as a beneficiary. “The visit by Konica Minolta Business Solutions and Food and Trees for Africa was an eventful, educational day,” she said. We are grateful to them for bringing an interesting experience to our school and community. Our educators and learners learnt about the benefits of planting trees in our environment and new, modern ways of planting them.”

“These types of initiatives are business imperatives,” said national marketing co-ordinator for Konica Minolta South Africa, Ritchi Smith. “Konica Minolta Business Solutions joining the initiative shows growth in awareness around environmental sustainability. As more people join corporate social initiatives like this, we can reach more communities in need.”

"We are able to continue to green communities that need it most through the support of sponsors like Konica Minolta South Africa. The company has enabled us to respond to thousands of applications for fruit and shade trees over the past 11 years," said Emily Jones, trees and carbon programme manager for FTFA.

“These efforts strengthen Konica Minolta’s global sustainability vision,” explained Smith. “This vision has recently earned Konica Minolta, Inc. (Konica Minolta) a Gold Level Recognition Medal in the EcoVadis 2018 sustainability ratings for three years in a row, which places Konica Minolta in the top two percent of suppliers and reflects its corporate philosophy, which drives all of the corporation’s day-to-day business practices. Konica Minolta was also listed among the 2019 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World. This is the second time that            Konica Minolta has been included on the prestigious Global 100 list.”

Since 2008, Konica Minolta South Africa has donated a total of 43 708 trees, including 4 600 bamboo and 124 tree-equivalent spekboom plants, both of which are particularly effective at removing carbon from the atmosphere.

The ongoing planting programme has so far offset an estimated 16,128.41 tons of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent), enabling Konica Minolta South Africa to achieve carbon-neutral status, mitigate global warming and improve air quality, in line with its broader commitment to sustainable business practices.

The tree donations will also help prevent water overflow and erosion, while the fruit trees planted will support food security in South Africa.

“Plants and trees are the lifeblood of humanity,” said Smith. “They give us the oxygen we breathe, the food we eat, our shelter and shade. Konica Minolta South Africa is excited to continue this partnership with its authorised dealers and Food & Trees for Africa, as together we can impact many more lives.”

Konica Minolta South Africa’s ongoing tree donation has reached 837 beneficiary organisations, including 802 schools and 35 community centres, as well as 11 639 homes. With the programme’s focus on sustainability, 129 community educators have been trained through the tree-planting activities and are now empowered to take the initiative forward across the country.

Jeminah Mkhize facilitator from FTFA conducting a demonstration for the pupils and planting the first tree of the day

Konica Minolta Business Solutions and FTFA join hands to plant trees with the pupils of St Augustine's Primary School

Boitumelo Motsamai, Senior Sales Executive at Konica Minolta Business Solutions Bloemfontein (known as Tumi. Tumi is the name given to the first tree planted in this picture) and Jeminah Mkhize facilitator at FTFA, conducting a demonstration for the pupils and planting the first tree of the day

Mogorosi Oabetswe and Ngakantsi Lesedi from St Augustine's Primary School planting trees

Lejaka Reaoleboga and Ncamane Kutloano from St Augustine's Primary School planting trees