Breweries and distilleries around the world are reinventing their processes in order to make them more sustainable and waste-free. According to Air Company, the carbon-neutral spirit company producing a bottle of vodka has an average carbon footprint of 13 pounds. They and other distilleries promise to do more for the planet over the next few years in order to combat the waste produced by major productions.
Air Company, which produces and sells carbon-negative vodka, took first place at the NASA CO2 Conversion Challenge held in August. Air Company manufactures its alcohol using recaptured carbon dioxide and removes an additional pound of CO2 from the air. The startup was previously featured as one of our Top Five Creative Carbon Capturing Brands and won Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas Awards 2021.
The Bruichladdich Distillery in Scotland aims to be carbon neutral by the year 2025. The company also plans to produce malted barley, wort, and other products in the same way. What about a whiskey made with pure Scott barley, fresh Hebridean waters, and net zero? This sounds like something you’d order on a Friday.
Diageo, the world’s largest spirits company, announced last year that it would achieve zero carbon emissions by 2030. Diageo’s larger goal, Society 2030 – Spirit of Progress, calls for the use of 100% renewable energy and a 50% reduction in indirect carbon emissions. They will also use 100% recyclable packaging by 2030. Diageo’s distilleries, such as Royal Lochnagar and Oban, are already carbon neutral.
As the trend gains momentum, new brands are emerging that focus on environmentally-conscious alcoholic production. One of these is Bespoken Spirits, a company that reinvents the traditional spirit industry using sustainable maturation methods. Wunderman Thompson Intelligence interviewed founders Stu and Martin Janousek in March this year. Aaron says, “We are bringing science and sustainability into an industry steeped with tradition.”
These businesses, including spirit distilleries, are fighting climate change despite the fact the food and beverage industry has been slow in addressing its production waste and CO2 emissions. To reduce pollution and emissions and to appeal to environmentally-conscious consumers, brands will have to reevaluate the sustainability of their products and processes.