Anheuer-Busch InBev SA/NV (AB InBev), which owns the beer brand Budweiser, has recently stated that its brewery in the Indian city of Mysuru (Mysore) will source 80% of its electricity supply from solar energy. According to AB InBev, the Mysuru plant, also known as the T Narasipura operation, represents a major step toward reaching the company’s environmental goals. AB InBev aims to produce every bottle of Budweiser beer using renewable energies and reduce the company’s overall carbon footprints by about 30% in 2025. AB InBev announced these targets as part of its green energy mission statement for Budweiser that was released in March 2017.
Media reports say that the Mysuru brewery is AB InBev’s first beer brewery in India that is mainly powered by solar energy. The transnational beverage company has signed an agreement with the AMP Solar Group, a Canadian solar company, to secure 30 megawatts of power for this brewery annually for a period of 10 years (a total purchase of 3.6 gigawatt-hours). AB InBev further promises that every bottle of Budweiser made in India will be 100% produced with renewable electricity in the future.
Gagandeep Sethi, director of supply and logistic for AB InBev’s operations in India, said that assuming a brewery consumes 10-15 kilowatt-hours of electricity to make every hectoliter of beer, then 750 hectoliters of beer would require at least 1 million kilowatt-hours of electricity. By sourcing 80% of the electricity supply for the Mysuru brewery to solar generation, the company is saving huge amounts of energy. Sethi further noted this plant will soon be running 100% on renewable energies.
By switching to renewable generation to power local breweries, AB InBev has made itself a demand contributor to India’s burgeoning solar market, which is now the world’s third largest. Although solar only represents just 5% of India’s electricity mix, the Indian government has set the target of increasing domestic installed solar capacity from the present level of 21,000 megawatts to 100,000 megawatts in 2022.
AB InBev plans to have all its breweries in the Indian state of Karnataka to wholly use renewable electricity by 2025. The company also just announced that its newest brewery in China (i.e. located in Putian, a city in Fujian Province) will be using electricity provided by a 15-megawatt solar power plant constructed by GCL, a major integrated solar energy provider based within the country. This solar power plant can generate 15,000 kilowatt-hours annually and can power the Putian brewery to produce about 360 million bottle of beer annually.
Image Source: Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV.
AB InBev also stated in January 2018 that all Budweiser breweries in the US had already switched to using 100% renewable energies. Moreover, all Budweiser bottles and cans now have a label indicating this achievement to the consumers.
Since the beginning of 2018, AB InBev has purchased 300 megawatts of renewable generation for the production of Budweiser beer. “Beer has been around for 3,000 years – we would like that to continue for another 3,000 years,” said Brian Perkins, vice president of global marketing for Budweiser. Tony Milikin, chief procurement and sustainability officer of AB InBev, also said that the green energy label on the Budweiser packaging is there to make consumers more confident in his company’s efforts toward protecting the environment. Milikin pointed out that consumers generally are more skeptical of big companies’ sustainable development plans.
Approximately 41 million bottles of Budweiser beer are sold every day worldwide. If AB InBev is successful in making a complete switch to renewable energies, then the company will have contributed to a reduction in carbon emissions that is equivalent to taking 48,000 traditional fuel vehicles off the road every year. AB InBev estimates that 31% of its overall electricity supply will come from renewable generation by the end of 2018.
(The above article is an English translation of a Chinese article written by Daisy Chuang.)