Can Cartels Top 5 Most Sustainable US Breweries
Considering the undeniable effects of climate change, many businesses are becoming increasingly environmentally conscious. Every company regardless of their sector operate some form of environmental policy. Here at Can Cartel our main objective is to provide the highest quality canned drinks to our lovely customers. Unlike many of our online competitors Can Cartel specialises in cans alone, this in itself has some significant environmental benefits. Most notably recycled cans contain 73% recycled material and most aluminium cans are recyclable. Cans protect the product integrity, are easy to carry and wear well. Cans chill faster and have a longer shelf life. New cans are made with recycled aluminium which reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 95%.
Not to mention the ease of recycling them in built-up and urban environments. Cans also weigh significantly less than bottles and require less protective packaging, making the shipping process more sustainable and less environmentally damaging.
While we all love a pint of draught beer and we know a trip to the pub is much more environmentally friendly in terms of waste production. However, after over a year of lock-down we have all learned to enjoy a drink or two at home. We each have our go to drink, our Saturday night favourite and our ‘treat yourself’ tipple what we often don’t consider is the environmental impact the production of these products have. Here at Can Cartel we like to support breweries that have exceptional environmental policies and we want to contribute to and build on the green steps taken by so many in the industry. When sustainability in the canned drinks industry is mentioned it is impossible not to immediately consider the many initiatives been implemented by some of the oldest and most well-known breweries in the US, the home of craft beer. We decided to give you our top 5 most sustainable breweries.
Fort Collins - Colorado
Did you know New Belgium beers are partially made with sunlight and biogas?
Neither did we! New Belgium arguably has one of the most advanced and energy efficient environmental policies within the Craft Beer Industry. They aim to optimize environmental, economic and social well-being and have been eagerly looking for ways to reduce their carbon emissions since 1998. The environmental initiatives undertaken by the company include becoming members of the Business for Innovative Climate & Energy Policy. New Belgium also actively encouraged the City of Fort Collins to adopt a goal of 100% renewable electricity by 2030. Fat Tire is America’s first ever certified carbon neutral beer. New Belgium consider climate change one of the most pressing issues of our time. They have taken the initiative to install solar panels and create electricity from waste water, capturing and reusing the heat in the brewing process. They co-founded the Brewers Association Sustainable Subcommittee. Not only have they taken these initiatives among themselves but they have also motivated an entire city to become more environmentally aware. The solar panels installed at their brewery in Fort Collins produce 11% of the electricity at the site and enough electricity to power their canning and bottling lines. Considering New Belgium as a concept was born on a cycling trip it is no surprise that the company have always held cycling at the heart. Cycling reduces Co2 emissions and an aim of New Belgium is to get people on their bikes. New Belgium have been involved in a number of local bicycle initiatives, including donating over $9 million to bicycle advocacy non-profits across the United States and donating some of their Ashville brewery lands to become part of a greenway.
Similarly to New Belgium, Sierra Nevada have established a number of initiatives based on improving sustainability and environmental factors in the brewing industry. Sierra Nevada were concerned with the ability to efficiently recycle materials used within their brewery, which was considered an industry wide problem. They decided to collaborate with other industry professionals including Hi-wire brewing and Riverbend Malt to improve recycling conditions. They invested in equipment to make the recycling process easier and established a recycling cooperative.
Brooklyn, New York
As an urban brewery operating from a repurposed building in Brooklyn, they have actively tried to create a more sustainable environment since 1994 by establishing a number of initiatives. Heat exchange systems were installed at their Williamsburg facility in 1996 to reduce the energy demand during the brewing process. They founded the Green Team in 2013, which included representatives from each department. The company converted to LED lights to reduce energy. From 2011-2012 they installed a highly efficient boiler to reduce energy use and began the process of steam reclamation. The town creek wastewater plant has been powered by the waste products and chemicals from the brewery since 2014.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Founders establish environmental goals each year to help them create a better brewing environment. They focus on three main areas: water, energy and recyclability. They aim to reduce their water usage from 3.57bbl in 2020 to 3.46bbl in 2021. Similar initiatives have been employed by the company when it comes to energy reuse . They have a goal of heat reclamation and energy efficient lighting to facilitate using less energy from 127.5mj in 2020 to 119.39mj in 2021. Waste is the third of founders list of environmental concerns and they are working alongside like-minded businesses to transition from disposable to reusable products. To reduce it down from 92% in 2020 to 88.2 % in 2021. They have also established Strike Force Green an internal sustainability team. The team consists of members from each department who aim to implement the water, waste and energy reduction measures within their departments and are also involved in public outreach programmes.
5. Mast Landing
From the outset Mast Landing had environmental and sustainability in mind. Mast landing cover 100% of their electricity usage by employing community solar power. The community legislation was initially passed by the state in 2009. Community solar promotes clean energy locally. Mast Landing’s subscription to a solar farm results in more solar energy on the local grid and supports small and local businesses that install this solar power.
We hope you consider the efforts made by these environmentally conscious breweries in future!
Clare @ Can Cartel