Tadcaster brewery toasted for its water efficiency

The UK's largest brewer, Molson Coors, has been applauded by the Environment Agency (EA) in reducing water usage and becoming more socially responsible.

The brewery, based in Tadcaster, was commended for its water efficiency in the Environment Agency’s Greener Business Campaign which ran throughout September.

The brewer has invested in equipment which cleans and reuses water from some of its non-production processes and now uses less water in its operations.

3.3 pints of water were being used in the production of each pint of beer in 2011, which is a reduction of 13% on the 3.8 pints of water used in 2008.

Molson Coors takes water from boreholes in the brewery’s underlying magnesium limestone. The water is rich in sulphate of lime which is ideal for making it bitter.

Two years ago, these groundwater levels were observed to be in decline and the EA offered to review the business’ water efficiency.

The firm has also begun encouraging the local community, many of whom work at one of its local breweries, to value its local water resources.

EA technical specialist, James Finigan said:

“As well as improving their own water efficiency, Molson Coors has taken the lead in setting up the Tadcaster River Wharfe Community Users Group, to help local people to understand the importance of the river. It’s a valuable move for themselves as a business, because in becoming a more environmentally-responsible operation, they are contributing to their own future.

“The Environment Agency is working with many businesses in this way to help them conserve water, so we all have enough for our homes and businesses and to protect our valuable natural environment.”

Molson Coors are not the only company that have received praise recently. It was announced last week by the EA that Coca-Cola Enterprises’ Wakefield business had cut its water use to product ratio by 10% since 2007.

EA chairman, and Sustainability Leaders Awards judging chair, Lord Smith also praised Britain’s food and drink businesses for reducing their water purchase bill by £1.82m in 2011.

Conor McGlone

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