US food giant Kraft Foods said it has reduced the amount of water it uses in manufacturing by 21% since 2005.

Over the past three years, the company said it has reduced water by more than three billion gallons, exceeding its goal two years early.

"We're changing behaviour and getting results," said Steve Yucknut, vice president, sustainability. "Around the world, thousands of our employees are working on projects that help us reduce our environmental impact. We focus on manufacturing, since that's where we use the most water for internal operations. And we pay particular attention to water-scarce areas, where the need is greatest."

Kraft said three lakes at the company's headquarters in Northfield, capture rainwater for reuse and the building is cooled by ice - recycled water.

Globally, the company's Fallingbostel cheese plant in Germany reduced water use by 7%      (18.5 million gallons).  The plant is now reusing its manufacturing process water, instead of using the town's, to run the plant's cooling towers.

In Bahrain, Kraft's cheese and beverage plant reduced water use by 33% (five million gallons), and in Australia, the company's Port Melbourne plant recently won an environmental award for taking actions to reduce potable water use up to 39% (20 million gallons).