Anheuser-Busch InBev today announced it achieved a water use ratio of 3.2 hectoliters per hectoliter of production from 2013 to 2014, which the company says makes it the most water-efficient brewer in the world.
This resulted in saving the equivalent of the amount of water it takes to make more than 4 billion cans of beers.
In addition to the work done within its brewery walls, the company says it also engages in a comprehensive water stewardship program, including watershed protection measures in brewery communities facing water stress and working with barley growers to obtain the most "crop per drop." The efforts aim to improve the quality and quantity of available water for all users.
The announcement coincides with AB InBev’s 7th global celebration of the United Nations Environment Programme’s World Environment Day. This year, the company is putting a particular emphasis on water issues, an important input to AB InBev’s products and a vital resource to its communities around the world.
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To tackle environmental challenges inside and outside its brewery walls, AB InBev says it's coming together for the first time in a common initiative — a Global Walk for Water, where AB InBev employees will log steps and charitable donations to drive awareness of water issues in their communities.
AB InBev also has invested in partnerships and initiatives that address the whole water ecosystem, including facility
At the end of 2014, for example, nine breweries returned clean, repurposed water to help community water needs. While the water isn’t potable, AB InBev says it can be pivotal in water-stressed regions as it can be used for many other purposes including agriculture, landscaping and road cleaning.
AB InBev reports it’s on track to meet its eight Global Environmental Goals by 2017 — and already has achieved two of these goals early. The company has achieved its goal to reduce the amount of water needed to produce its products, and exceeded its targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).
The company reduced its global greenhouse emissions intensity by nearly 11 percent surpassing the 2017 goal of 10 percent three years ahead of schedule.
AB InBev’s sustainability moves have had a significant payback — the company has generated at least $420 million in revenue from recycled materials alone, and water and energy efficiency improvements have saved $92 million.