Ambev, which uses water as its main raw material, is working to reduce its consumption rate in breweries and plants
Water is a finite and vulnerable resource, which has become increasingly scarce and disputed. It can and should be reused, recycled, and properly treated in order to avoid further damage to the environment, and subsequent scarcity or inaccessibility for many.
The reduction and good use of water resources by the industrial sector are essential to minimize environmental impacts. The beer industry in Brazil has already been adopting effective measures for the reuse and reduction of water consumption.
Water is Ambev’s main raw material and for over 20 years it has been working to reduce consumption rates at its breweries and plants. It does this through a view of sustainability that prioritizes management guided by water consumption reduction, preservation of water basins and access to potable water.
The company’s initiatives are in line with the strategy of the National Confederation of Industry (CNI) towards a low-carbon economy in Brazil. CNI’s Sustainable Industry project is based on four pillars: energy transition, carbon market, circular economy, and forest conservation.
Reduction – By investing in innovation, technology, active listening, sharing operational improvements and reusing technological equipment, Ambev avoids waste and has managed to reduce water consumption at its plants by 55% in the last 18 years, surpassing the water efficiency goal set for 2025. The average water consumption for each liter of beer produced is a world benchmark in the beverage industry.
At the Anápolis (GO) and Uberlândia (MG) units, water is reused to irrigate pastures on farms, increasing per area yield. In São Luís (MA), water is reused in an aluminum industry. In Águas Claras (SE), water is used for irrigating productive areas for a small community of farmers. In Viamão (RS), this water is used for fertigation in rice cropping. Also in the breweries of Santa Catarina, Ponta Grossa (PR) and Sete Lagoas (MG), these effluents are used to generate power through a microturbine.
An unprecedented project for the reuse of internal effluents was implemented at the brewery of Jaguariúna (SP) in 2016 and later expanded to the breweries of Aquiraz (CE), Equatorial (MA), Guarulhos (SP), Rio de Janeiro (RJ) and Sete Lagoas (MG).