How To Clean A Mountain Goat
Reducing the environmental impact of a brewery

Breweries are typically industrial operations that craft fantastic beer but consume a lot of power and water and often have significant emissions. We at Goat are hell-bent on doing things smarter by reducing our impact on the environment. Moving to the new building during 2004 gave us a great opportunity to set things up right.

Site And Renovations

A big issue was finding the right site in inner Melbourne. The building we found has10 metre ceilings and is north facing giving us lovely winter sunlight. When we took over the site it was a disused warehouse shell. We tracked down a huge range of reclaimed materials including corrugated iron for internal walls, windows and frames, doors, timber for the bar and three big tables, various cupboards and cabinets, a cool room and even a second hand urinal.

Rainwater

One of the first things you notice when you walk in the front door is a big rainwater tank by the bar. This tank holds 11,000 litres of rainwater that we catch from the roof, filter and  flush all the toilets with. In our first 18 months in the building this tank saved just on 200,000 litres of mains water.

Organic Beer

All our beers are naturally brewed avoiding all preservatives and additives. Our India Pale Ale was Australia’s first certified organic beer. While we no longer brew that as a permanent option, these days our biggest selling beer – Steam Ale – is certified organic.

Cans

We love cans for many different reasons, one important one being their impact on the environment. Cans are lighter to transport around (whether it be a six-pack from the brewery or a truck carrying pallets to our customers) and can be easily recycled. While cans are certainly on trend now, it was quite a step forward for Australian craft beer when we permanently released our Summer Ale in cans late in 2013.

Paper Products

Whenever we order boxes, coasters, letterheads, business cards etc they are all made from recycled paper.

Spent Grain

After we’ve taken from the malts what we want to make beer with, the leftovers are given to a local farmer, who has cows who love eating this spent grain.

Steam And Odour

These are very common emissions from all breweries. We have fashioned a copper vapour condensing unit and attached it to our brew kettle. This almost completely eliminates steam and most of the odour when we are boiling the wort.

Waste Water

Before any waste from the brewery floor goes to sewer it is pH and temperature neutralised in a holding tank. We use a three vessel trade waste system. The first tank screens the larger solids, such as hop and malt debris or bits of plastic or wood). The second tank catches the smaller solids, such as yeast slurry, floor grit or finer hop and malt particles. The third tank is where the trade waste adjusted for temperature and pH. This ensures that the biosolids, temperature and chemical load on our sewer system is drastically reduced. We also pay an outside contractor to perform higher level servicing and to monitor our system for other pollutants. We also provide the EPA with certification when our settling tank is emptied twice a year.

Ride To Work

Every Christmas our staff are paid a bonus based on the number of times in the year they rode their push bike, walked or caught public transport to work. Each week our staff rack up around 300 k’s commuting to work sustainably. We also have two goat bikes that live at the brewery and are used for daytime trips to the bank, post office, bakery etc.

Offices Made From Boxes

We needed to increase our office space in 2011 so we asked our mate Pete Ho at Phoeey Architects what to do. He dreamt up the box creation pictured above. We built two new offices and a foyer with a basic stud frame but incorporated old beer cartons, repurposed yacht sails for curtains, reclaimed carpet tiles and then wallpapered an internal wall with old beer labels we didn’t need. It’s a fun space to work in.

 

What Next?

We’re always throwing more ideas around in here but if you think of some more environmentally friendly things we can do, please email us. We’d love to hear from you.

goat@goatbeer.com.au

80 North St, Richmond, Victoria. Ph 03 9428-1180