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Beer can Wreck the Environment

Updated: May 3, 2023

A fact most breweries want to hide is the amount of energy brewing takes. If you take into consideration the whole process from start to finish, an immense amount of energy is required to make beer. Here are some facts that stand out.

  • 100 gallons of beer requires about 250kWh electricity to make.

  • It takes 8 pints water used for every 1 pint of beer produced.

  • Barley for malt often gets transported halfway around the world, using lots of fuel.

  • Spent barley often gets dumped into waste.

For some people, the pleasures of beer drinking come at too high a cost to the environment. But to those who are so concerned, I've got some good news: Göller Brewery uses far less energy than the average brewery by using a few simple tricks. The result is a minimal impact on the environment from the Brewery in Zeil am Main, Germany. Here is why:

  • Göller gets all their grains from local farmers within 2-3 miles from the Brewery.

  • The maltster they use for their barley resides in the nearby city of Bamberg.

  • The maltster uses ancient methods including drying and roasting the barley with wood fires of local beechwood trees.

  • Hops are brought in from the nearby region of Hallertau.

  • Minimal transportation means very little fuel is spent on trucks.

  • Göller has mostly solar power to supply the brewery with electric heating.

  • They use a heat exchanger to save hot water for the next brew.

  • Spent grains are given back to the farmers who sold the grain. It is used to feed their animals that supply the manure for fertilizing the next batch of grain. A perfect cycle!

  • They don't buy CO2 carbonation, but capture & re-use the naturally occurring CO2 from fermentation.

  • Most of their beer is sold directly in their own pub, the Alte Freyung.

Beer is a way of life to the people of Zeil am Main, and they try to make their lives beneficial to the environment. They've done an excellent job!

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