As the world celebrates the 30th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, Anheuser-Busch Companies (A-B), the world's largest brewer, based in St. Louis, Mo., celebrates the 30th anniversary of its own environmental program: A Pledge & A Promise. The program, which began in 1970 when then-chairman August A. Busch, Jr. promised that Anheuser-Busch would use its resources to work for a quality environment, extends throughout all Anheuser-Busch operations and subsidiaries.

Today, Chairman and CEO August A. Busch III has encouraged employees to remember -- both at work and at home -- that, "Our environmental philosophy is based on the belief that the world we all share is given to us in trust. Every choice we make regarding the earth, air, and water around us is made with the objective of preserving these resources for all generations to come."

Recently released figures show that Anheuser-Busch employees have embraced the philosophy with open arms, as the following 1999 data indicate:

A-B breweries recycled:
Spent Grains 3.526 billion pounds
Glass Cullet 83.7 million pounds
Corrugated Cardboard 51.9 million pounds
Aluminum 3.8 million pounds
Scrap Metal 6.2 million pounds
Plastic Strapping 1.6 million pounds
Office Paper 1.5 million pounds
Miscellaneous materials 11.4 million pounds

  • Anheuser-Busch Recycling Corporation (ABRC), the world's largest recycler of used aluminum beverage containers, recycled 685 million pounds of aluminum cans. This is more than 130 percent of the number of cans A-B ships domestically.

  • A-B reduced solid waste sent to landfills by 3.4 million pounds compared to the previous year, primarily through recycling and reuse. Since 1991 landfilled solid waste has been reduced 53% or 117.6 million pounds.

  • Busch Gardens Tampa Bay composted 2.7 million pounds of yard and 4 million pounds of animal stable waste. The finished compost is reused in the park for landscaping projects. In total, all Busch Entertainment Theme Parks composted 3.4 million pounds of yard and 4.8 million pounds of animal stable waste.

  • A-B's Baldwinsville, N.Y. brewery composted more than 28.5 million pounds of wastewater sludge into a valuable compost that is widely used for major landscaping projects in the region. It also land applied 12.6 million pounds of nutrient rich sludge to enhance local soils for agriculture.

  • A-B's Metal Container Corporation began efforts to switch from chipboard separator sheets and wood top frames to plastic alternatives. Plastic alternatives last a minimum of 10 years, much longer than 1-2 years for chipboard separators and 3 years for wood top frames. These efforts prevented 2.8 million pounds of chipboard and 693 thousand pounds of wood from being used last year. Also, by working with its aluminum suppliers in 1999, Metal Container Corporation (MCC) recycled about 12.6 million pounds of aluminum coil packaging (cores, pallets, etc.). MCC also recycled 165.6 million pounds of aluminum from can and lid manufacturing.

  • Busch Agricultural Resource, Inc. (BARI) operations composted 611.7 million pounds of farm materials. BARI also recycled 20.0 million pounds of scrap metal and 840 thousand pounds of miscellaneous materials.

  • Diatomaceous Earth (DE) and spent beechwood chips are two by-products that A-B breweries developed markets for the last several years. Last year, A-B breweries recycled 14.2 million pounds of DE. DE is the medium that is used to filter A-B's products. Most of the breweries recycle it as a component in cement. Another by-product of the brewing process is spent beechwood chips. In 1999, A-B breweries recycled 12.7 million pounds of beechwood chips into compost and mulch.

  • A-B's Forms Management division has increased the number of forms converted to an electronic format to about 200. Many of the these forms contained three to five parts and are now printed individually or sent electronically. More than 3,000 A-B employees now use an "Electronic Forms Library." Currently, A-B is developing a method to estimate paper reductions from electronic forms use.

  • A-B subsidiaries recycled more than 4.5 billion pounds of material, including corrugated cardboard, paper, aluminum, plastic, glass and scrap metal. And as one of the nation's largest purchasers of recycled-content products, A-B purchased more than 1 billion pounds of post-consumer content products in 1999.

As a major user of packaging material and other products, A-B takes seriously its responsibility to be environmentally conscious, particularly in minimizing the impact our operations have on the environment. As these successful efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle materials highlight, environmental stewardship is both good corporate citizenship, and good business. Thirty years after making a pledge to help protect and preserve the world we all share, we're still committed to "Brewing Solutions For A Better Environment." To learn more about A-B's commitment to the environment, log on to