Based in Burton, Coors Brewers is one of the largest in the UK. Producing over five million barrels a year, the business is also a major consumer of water and discharges over two million cubic metres of effluent each year, at a cost of nearly £2 million.
What we did
To reduce its overall water use and effluent costs, Coors Brewers worked closely with their water supplier Severn Trent on a number of initiatives.
After an initial water review carried out with a project manager from Severn Trent, a number of tasks were identified to reduce Coors' overall effluent discharge. The review identified excessive use of water for cleaning, better use of water when controlling the chase and purge process, minimisation of bright beer tank overflows to reclaim valuable product and a new customised cleaning-in-place (CIP) regime to reduce the use of water and chemicals.
The water review also identified the south filter room as an area where effluent discharge could be improved, as the room contributed 4 per cent of Coors' overall effluent volume, accounting for 7 per cent of Coors' annual trade effluent charges.
What the benefits were
Cost savings were significant. The more accurate dosing and control in CIP operations produced an annual saving of £42,000 in chemical, water, effluent and electricity costs. Benefits in the south filter room were even more dramatic with annual savings on effluent charges of £40,000.
The improvements made in CIP overall were £155,000, with a payback period for the improvements of 41 months. The environmental benefits were also substantial, with reductions in the volume and concentration of effluent discharged and reduced product losses.
After the positive results that Coors gained in the south filter room, they signed a three-year contract with Severn Trent Water that would apply the same water reviews to the rest of the brewery.
The partnership with Severn Trent also helped Coors to comply with discharge consent limits.