Independently-owned Brick Lane Brewing has become B Corp Certified and is now targeting making its operations carbon-free by 2025.
Brick Lane is now one of the few brewing companies in Australia to achieve the B Corp certification, which is a designation made by the US-based not-for-profit B Lab to applicant organisations that can demonstrate high standards of positive social and environmental impact.
The brewer, which was founded in 2018, has invested $50m into a state-of-the-art facility in Melbourne was purpose-designed to minimise the environmental footprint in an industry that has traditionally been highly water and energy intensive.
Brick Lane Managing Director, Paul Bowker, said B Corp Certification validated the sustainability path Brick Lane had pursued since producing its first can of beer in 2018.
“Sustainability is no longer a negotiable for any organisation that wants to be taken seriously and from Day 1 Brick Lane has benchmarked itself against the highest standards of environmental and social impact. Becoming a B Corp shows we are on the right track,” Bowker said.
“Embedding sustainability throughout brewing operations is a journey of continuous improvement and our ambitions go above and beyond the rigorous requirements of B Corp Certification.
“Ultimately we’re working toward eliminating carbon emissions entirely from beer production by 2025 and by doing so, leading the way for other independent brewers.”
Some of the initiatives undertaken by Brick Lane and acknowledged in its B Corp certification include:
- Reducing the ratio of water used to beer produced by 40 per cent to 3.7:1 in 2022 versus the 2019 baseline of 6.1:1.
- Using only fully recyclable packaging across all Brick Lane and partner brands
- Reducing both the electricity and natural gas consumed per unit of beer produced by more than half since 2019. Sourcing all CO2 used in brewing from sustainable fermentation-derived sources rather than from natural gas, ammonia or other fossil fuels.
- Moving from artificial to natural refrigerants, eliminating green house gas and ozone depletion potential from refrigeration gasses.
- Directing spent grain – the largest waste product in brewing – to farmers in the Greater Melbourne area for use as animal feed. Brick Lane currently diverts 99.3 per cent of solid waste generated away from landfill.
Bowker added: “Our talented, dedicated team at Brick Lane deserve credit for their commitment and ingenuity in driving the improvements made to date. But the work doesn’t stop – B Corp Certification is a continuous process and like all B Corps we are accountable for our ongoing performance against its benchmarks.
“We’re now focused squarely on eliminating carbon emissions from our operations and the electricity we consume to achieve ‘true zero’ brewing. Among other things, that will be supported by significant investment in renewable energy to drive production.”