Heineken joins industry environmental coalition

By Helen Glaberson

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Sustainability

Europe’s largest brewer Heineken has joined the beverage industry environmental roundtable (BIER), a coalition of beverage companies and supporting partners that aim to advance the industry’s environmental practices.

Herman van de Bergh, Heineken Program Manager Global Energy & Water Program said BIER offers Heineken an “excellent opportunity”​ to work with industry peers and to enhance the advancement of environmental sustainability efforts.

Tod Christenson, BIER Director said: “We are pleased to welcome Heineken to BIER.Heineken’s demonstrated commitment to sustainability and presence on the roundtable further solidifies BIER’s position as the leading voice for environmental stewardship in the beverage industry.”

BIER guidance

BIER aims to define a common framework for industry practices in the areas of water conservation and resource protection, energy efficiency and climate change mitigation.

In April this year BIER drew up guidance for greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting with the goal of developing guidance specifically for the beverage sector.

Following the completion of an interim draft in October 2008, the finished GHG document built on existing global protocols, including the greenhouse gas protocol and publically available specification 2050.

BIER maintained that the existing protocols were not enough on their own to give a complete picture for the drinks sector, and that the GHG document would help to avoid problems associated with disjointed efforts from members of the industry.

“The primary challenge we faced pertained to areas of the beverage value chain which were not discussed in great detail in existing methodologies,” ​said Christenson.

According to BIER, the absence of a united approach could lead to complications such as competing or incompatible methodologies, accounting practices not aligned with emerging legislation, more limited influence on emerging regulation, and/or confusing and potentially misleading product carbon labels.

Founded in 2006, BIER members include American Beverage Association, Bacardi Limited, Carlsberg Group, the Coca-Cola Company and PepsiCo.

Heineken owns over 140 breweries in more than 70 countries around the world with more than 200 brands, such as Amstel, Primus, Foster’s, Strongbow and Kingfisher.

The company’s sustainability strategy for 2020 has been formulated in the company’s ‘Brewing a Better Future’ ambition.

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