September 2012 Management Briefing - Environmental Sustainability in the Spirits Sector
This management briefing looks at the environmental sustainability challenges facing the spirits sector, examining the environmental strategies, targets and progress of the five principal international spirits companies: Diageo, Pernod Ricard, Bacardi, Beam and Brown-Forman. Focusing primarily on the companies' manufacturing operations, it looks at water use, energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, waste and packaging.
This management briefing looks at the environmental sustainability challenges facing the spirits sector, examining the environmental strategies, targets and progress of the five principal international spirits companies: Diageo, Pernod Ricard, Bacardi, Beam and Brown-Forman.
As with water efficiency, energy efficiency can vary markedly from distillery to distillery depending on the size of the facility and the production methods employed. As a general rule, however, the production of spirits is an energy-intensive process.
The production of distilled spirits, like any industrial manufacturing process, inevitably creates waste, whether that is organic material such as the 'pot ale' which is left in a pot-still in malt whisky production or solid waste such as the cardboard and plastic used to protect glass bottles prior to being filled.
Packaging is a high-profile sustainability issue for any consumer goods company simply by dint of its closeness to the consumer. The complexities of industrial production and the degree to which companies can mitigate the environmental impacts in production sites may be lost on many consumers but how heavy a pack is and what it is made from is readily apparent.
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