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Brewing beer using renewable energy makes business sense

Budweiser beer will now be made utilising renewable energy thanks to a record deal between AB inBev, makers of Budweiser, and BayWa r.e.

The 10-year deal, a virtual power purchase agreement, is part of AB InBev’s aim to be 100% renewable energy powered.

The deal will see power supplied from two solar farms with a combined power output of almost 200MW of which AB InBev will be supplied with over 130MW.

This is the largest Pan-European corporate solar power deal in history according to a press release by BayWa. According to the company, the deal covers AB InBev’s 14 breweries in Western Europe and over 50 brands, including Budweiser.

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BayWa r.e. will fund and develop two new solar sites in Spain, one of which will be called the Budweiser Solar Farm, which will provide 250 GWh of renewable electricity per year for AB InBev’s breweries.

Over the duration of the PPA, this is enough to power the equivalent of almost 670,000 European homes, or 100,000 stadium football matches.

The new solar capacity is expected to be added and connected by BayWa r.e. by March 2022. Before these solar sites are up and running, BayWa r.e. will provide AB InBev with 75GWh of Guarantees of Origin from its wind farm “La Muela” in Zaragoza, Spain – the equivalent power to produce enough beer for 18 Oktoberfests.

Budweiser brewed renewably

AB InBev’s European brewing operations produce over 55 million kegs of beer each year and around five million bottles of Budweiser each week.

Once all Budweiser in Western Europe is brewed renewably, the brand will feature a new symbol on the packaging to encourage consumers to choose a beer brewed with 100% renewable electricity.

Jason Warner, Zone President for Europe at AB InBev, said: “As a brewer, we rely on natural ingredients – water, hops, barley and yeast – to make our beers, so we know that sustainability is not just part of our business, it is our business. From recycling CO2 released in the brewing process to eliminating plastic from our packaging, we are constantly looking to not only reduce our environmental impact but to have a net-positive effect.

“This is why we are hugely excited today to announce this partnership with BayWa r.e. to build the Budweiser Solar Farm, add new European solar capacity and brew our beers across Western Europe with renewable electricity. As we welcome the new European Green Deal, we now ask our consumers, customers, colleagues, business partners and fellow companies to join us in shifting towards renewable power – we are making our 100% renewable electricity symbol available for any brands that are produced with renewables. This symbol is about driving positive change in what people buy in their weekly shop, order at the bar or drink with friends.”

As part of its 2025 Sustainability Goals, AB InBev has committed that all of its purchased electricity will come from renewable sources.

The company is making progress in shifting to renewable electricity in its operations around the world, including in the UK, Russia, Mexico, the United States, Australia, China and India.

This global commitment will make AB InBev the largest corporate buyer of renewable electricity in the consumer goods industry.

Source: This article was originally published on our sister website Smart Energy International

Babalwa Bungane
Babalwa Bungane is the content producer for ESI Africa - Clarion Events Africa. Babalwa has been writing for the publication for over five years. She also contributes to sister publications; Smart Energy International and Power Engineering International. Babalwa is a social media enthusiast.