The popularity of the craft beer market has boomed in recent years and breweries are taking notice of the impact they have on the environment. Great Lakes Brewing Company believes in crafting their award-winning beers in a socially and environmentally responsible way. “As we continue to grow and expand, we will do so with care and respect for our products, employees, customers, and planet,” they said. “We know that we are not perfect, but through zero-waste initiatives, employee benefits and wellness programs, energy conservation, responsible purchasing, and philanthropic giving in communities where our beer is sold, we strive to do the best we can.”
In celebration of Pittsburgh Earth Day, Great Lakes beers will be available at Andy’s Bar at the Fairmont Pittsburgh hotel for a special price following the Ecolution Fashion Show! On Friday, April 22nd, local downtown bars and hot spots are offering delicious Great Lakes Brewing beers for a great deal! Ten Penny on Penn Ave will offer $5 drafts from 11AM-5PM on the 22nd and Diamond Market in Market Square will offer $4 drafts from 11AM-5PM.
Great Lakes Brewing sustainability initiatives focus on three core projects, including Water Stewardship, Local Foods & Farming, and Reducing Waste.
“Because we’re located two miles from the shores of Lake Erie and we produce a product that is over 90% water, we’re committed to protecting this valuable resource in brewery operations. While brewing and bottling utilizes a large amount of water, we do our best to reduce and reuse within our bottling and cleaning processes.”
Local Foods & Farming
“In 2008 we took local food into our own hands by establishing Pint Size Farm in collaboration with Hale Farm and Village. Located half an hour from the brewery on a historic farm in Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Pint Size Farm’s half-acre plot produces high-quality, organic produce used seasonally in our brewpub. In 2010 we joined efforts with a group of Cleveland organizations to form Ohio City Farm, which may be the largest urban farm in the country.”
Waste as an Opportunity
“Along with traditional recycling, we believe in repurposing everything we can. Spent brewer’s grain finds new life as a soil amendment on our farms and feed for livestock used in our brewpub’s menu items. We’ve even used spent grain to cultivate mushrooms. Low-fill beers become sauces, ice creams, soups, sausage, and even soap. And used french fry oil becomes fuel for our Fatty Wagon, an energy-efficient shuttle that delivers brewpub guests to downtown sporting events. Take, make, remake–that’s how we operate.”