New Belgium Brewing Talks “Waste Diversion”

25 June 2012

From New Belgium:

If you were to put all the ants in the world in one pile and all the humans in the world in another pile, which pile would be bigger? The pile of ants- duh! And yet, surprisingly, our shovels aren’t colliding with any underground ant landfills and we don’t find ourselves stubbing our toes on tiny ant smokestacks. In nature, one creature’s waste is another’s food.

At New Belgium, we think that’s a smart and classy idea so we work hard to find a home for brewery byproducts. This means that we’ve been able to divert 99.9% of our waste from the landfill! And the cherry on top? Our Waste Diversion program actually generates revenue by the end of the day. Our full-time Waste Diversion Specialist, Alie, put together this handy dandy 2011 report and we thought you might like to take a peek. Enjoy!

In 2011, 94.38% of our waste stream was diverted from landfill. This is a small decrease from our 2010 diversion rate reported at 94.8%. It is important to note, these numbers do not include spent grain, spent yeast, spent DE or Process Water Treatment Plant (PWTP) sludge. Though these materials are not landfilled and are diverted to a local farms. We have chosen to report them separately, as they are considered to be a byproduct of the brewing process versus a waste stream. When these materials are included, the diversion rate would be 99.88% for 2011.

The following graph is the diversion ratio excluding brewery by-products


To account for annual growth, a waste (in pounds) to annual barrels of beer produced ratio is a method of
normalizing waste diversion rates on a yearly basis. The waste to barrel ratio for 2011 is as follows:
 In 2011, NBB created 2.14 lbs. of waste for each barrel of beer produced.
o Of this 2.14 lbs. of waste .12 lbs. are landfilled.
(89,292 lbs. of landfilled waste per 740,427 barrels packaged = .12 lbs. of landfilled waste per barrel)
o Of this 2.14 lbs. of waste 2.02 lbs. are diverted from landfill.
(1,499,350 lbs. of diverted waste per 740,427 barrels packaged = 2.02 lbs. of diverted waste per barrel)

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