5 Ways to Drink Sustainably
Fall is here! Thankfully, there are many opportunities to toast the season in a sustainable way!
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Fall is here! Thankfully, there are many opportunities to toast autumn in a sustainable way!
New Belgium Brewery
1. Support sustainable breweries. There are a growing number of breweries that are doing their part to minimize their impact on the environment. New Belgium for instance, utilizes the methane generated from the brewery's wastewater for 15% of their energy needs. The remaining 85% comes from a solar and wind power.
Wolaver’s Pumpkin Ale
2. Go organic. Organic beers are another way breweries are reducing their footprint. Ukiah-based Butte Creek Beers makes organic pilsnerss and IPAs using barley and hops that are not genetically modified and free of pesticides and articial fertilizers. Eel River, Peek, and Wolaver's are other organic options.
Brew Your Own
3. Brew your own.
Thanks President Carter for making home brewing legal! For ultimate bragging rights, you can brew your own organic beer at home with just a few essential home brew tools. For a truly sustainable brewing, be sure to buy local, organic ingredients, reuse equipment and supplies (even yeast), compost spent grains and hops (or feed them to livestock), use biodegradable cleaning and sanitizing products, and keg the beer, instead of bottling individually.
Drink What's On Tap
4. Drink what's on tap. Depending on the size, one full keg can divert up to 124 beer bottles, cans, or reusable cups from landfills. Only 30% of bottles are recycled, and it takes considerable resources to transport, recycle, and convert the raw material into new vessels. So next time you belly up, opt for draught rather than bottles.
Lose The Labels
5. Avoid beers with excessive packaging.
When you do buy bottles, avoid those with paper labels and foil wrapping. It doesn't seem like much, but when you consider that 85% of all alcohol consumed in the U.S. is beer, all those labels and wrappers add up. New Belgium reduced their annual cardboard usage by 150 tons (and consequently saved 174 metric tons of greenhouse gases) by minimizing the packaging in their 12-packs.
Cheers to sustainable beer!