AB InBev has inked a deal with energy developer BayWa r.e. to purchase 100% renewable electricity for its European brewing operations.
The ten-year virtual power purchase agreement (VPPA) will see power supplied from two solar farms with a combined power output of almost 200 megawatts, of which AB InBev will be supplied with more than 130 megawatts.
The deal covers AB InBev’s 14 breweries in Western Europe and more than 50 brands brewed and sold across 12 countries, including Budweiser.
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 gigawatt hours 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.
AB InBev’s European brewing operations produce more than 55 million kegs of beer each year and around 5 million bottles of Budweiser each week.
The new solar capacity is expected to be added and connected by BayWa r.e. by March 2022.
Once all Budweiser in Western Europe is brewed renewably, the brand will feature a new symbol on packs. The symbol is available for other businesses to use, in a move that the brewer hopes will help to shift consumer choice.
“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,” said Jason Warner, zone president for Europe at AB InBev.
“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 is aiming to purchase 100% of its electricity from renewable sources.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019