Increase Energy Efficiency in Your Brewery
Brewing is a complex and energy-intensive process that requires a significant amount of resources. From heating and cooling to pumping and processing, every step in the brewing process consumes energy. With the help of technology, breweries can significantly reduce their energy consumption and environmental impact, improve their operational efficiency, and save on energy costs. With the current energy crisis in Europe, this impact can be bigger than ever. Here are some tips for saving energy in a brewery.
- Establish an energy culture: Employee education and engagement is important in energy saving. Educate your employees and colleagues about best practices and encourage them to participate in energy-saving efforts. This will be the start of an energy culture, which in turn will give a good foundation for improvement for the company as a whole.
- Energy-efficient equipment: Investing in energy-efficient equipment such as boilers, refrigeration units, and LED lighting can significantly reduce energy usage.
- Process optimisation: Actively review your brewery’s production processes and find ways to optimize them. For example, continuous brewing will keep the brewhouse hot and reduce the heat lost in the heat transfer from liquid to metal when brewing. This in turn will mean that you use less energy to brew a batch of beer than if you start brewing with a cold brewery every time. You can also adjust the temperature and pressure of the boiling process, reduce water usage, and minimise the time it takes to chill the beer.
- Insulation: Proper insulation of the brewery and storage tanks can help to reduce heat loss and maintain a stable temperature, which can lead to energy savings.
- Turn your tanks quicker: The fermentation process is one of the most energy-consuming processes in the production of a beer, especially if you are fermenting cold. Using fermentation monitors like the Plaato Pro improves the turnover of the fermenter, by giving you the exact time the fermentation is over. This means that you can get the beer from the tank to the packaging quicker and you don’t use unnecessary energy in cooling the beer.
- Conduct an energy audit - An energy audit is a comprehensive assessment of a brewery's energy use and identifies areas where energy can be saved. It can be conducted by an external energy consultant or in-house staff trained in energy management. In several countries there are foundations and government-run programs, that can give financial aid for such energy audits to improve energy usage in the industry.
These are just a few energy-saving strategies, that can significantly help you in reducing your energy use, saving money, and reducing your environmental impact. It is important to remember that energy saving is an ongoing process and that technologies are always evolving. To ensure you use energy in the best way possible, it is important to continuously monitor and improve all aspects of your process, from receiving your raw materials to shipping out your final product.
If you want more inspiration, we suggest you give our podcast episode with Fell Brewery a listen. Here the director of Fell Brewery talks about how they have tackled the challenges of energy usage in the UK, and how it has impacted their organisation.