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MillerCoors Recycles 98% of All Brewery Waste

millercoorswateruseMoving towards zero waste operations, MillerCoors has reused or recycled 98 percent of all brewery waste, including glass, paperboard, plastics, metals and byproducts, according to its 2009 Sustainable Development Report.

The 44-page report, “From Grain To Glass,” covers the company’s corporate social responsibility activities and goals as well as the progress it has made since the 2008 joint venture between Miller Brewing Company and Coors Brewing Company.

The report highlights efforts in the company’s five key sustainable development priorities: Alcohol Responsibility, Environmental Sustainability, Sustainable Supply Chain, People and Community Investment and Ethics and Transparency.

Key environmental highlights include:

  • Recorded a 4.10:1.00 water-to-beer ratio, ahead of the established water usage target set by the United Nations Environment Program for brewers worldwide of 5.00 barrels of water for each barrel of beer produced. The company aims to reduce the ratio to 3.96:1.00 in 2009.
  • Reused or recycled 98 percent of all brewery waste, including glass, paperboard, plastics, metals and byproducts. The majority of the byproducts created during the brewing process is responsibly reused or recycled and the Virginia brewery achieved a 99.2 percent waste diversion from landfill.
  • Reduced the diameter of its aluminum can ends slightly, resulting in $10.1 million in savings and a reduction of 10.4 million pounds of aluminum.
  • Produced 1.7 million gallons of fuel-grade ethanol entirely from waste beer.
  • Reduced electrical use by 6.8 percent at the North Carolina plant.
  • Cut reliance on natural gas by 9.3 percent at the Texas brewery by using biogas from wastewater in boilers.

MillerCoors also set several environmental goals by 2015. The brewer targets a reduction in the amount of retail packaging by 75 million tons or 2 percent and waste to landfill by 15 percent. The company also plans to cut water usage by 15 percent to achieve a 3.50:1.00 water-to-beer ratio and reduce energy use by 128 MJ/hl.

SAB/Miller, the parent company of MillerCoors, recently published its own CSR report.

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