Drinkability & Sustainability - The Perfect Cocktail

So your business has stopped using plastic straws and now serves wines on tap. Great! These changes, along with many others, are positive ways you can make your business more eco-friendly. But have you ever stopped to think about the drinks you’re selling to your customers too?

Image credit - Greensand Ridge

The alcohol manufacturing process is detrimental to the environment in more ways than one, and your customers care about it. Alcohol always follows along the same route as food trends, and with the heightened awareness of the effects agricultural processes have on the planet, sustainability is at the forefront of consumer’s minds. 

The statistics speak for themselves. Did you know it takes around 295 litres of water to make just ONE litre of beer, the majority of wine’s carbon footprint comes from the shipping alone, and nearly all the water that goes into the still to distill spirits, emerges as waste? 

So what can be done?

Being more aware yourself, of the brands and drinks you’re selling is the first step in ensuring you practise what you preach. Telling consumers to drink responsibly, yet offering alcoholic drinks that were manufactured irresponsibly has a negative effect on your business and the environment. The good news is there are many brands out there that are changing the way they produce their drinks, or are building their entire brand around an eco-friendly ethos from the start. Energy use, sourcing raw ingredients, water usage, packaging and waste management are all key issues that are starting to be addressed more and more by producers, because they know their approach to sustainability will only increase in importance as time goes on. 

What are brands doing?

Distilled spirits production needs huge amounts of water, particularly for vodka, and the waste from rum and tequila production significantly affects waterways and soil toxicity, while producing huge amounts of greenhouse gases. Brands like Chase Distillery, Forest Gin and Greensand Ridge are perfect examples of what can be done to combat these issues.

Single estate distilleries are sustainable by nature because everything is done in one place. Larger distilleries outsource their white spirit, botanicals and packaging, shipping it to them from around the world. But distilleries like Greensand Ridge source and produce everything locally, and even help reduce agricultural waste by using ingredients that would otherwise be unsuitable for supermarket sale. Chase Distillery grows it’s own potatoes, using the mash waste as field fertiliser to grow more potatoes. It also hand bottles and corks all its products. 

Image credit - Greensand Ridge

So with a view to being more aware of what you’re offering your customers, there are a few things you can do right now to support your business’s eco-friendly standpoint. When buying wine, location matters. Stocking wines that are more local, or from neighbouring countries with less distance to ship is a positive change. Choose cans over bottles for beers and soft drinks. Cans are lighter, therefore shipping efficiency is increased thanks to reduced weight; also cans are easier to recycle. Choose spirits from single estate distilleries, and those that are conscious about their production processes where possible. 

If you’re not sure where to start, or where to find these brands, we support a number of producers here at Drayman who go to great efforts to reduce their carbon footprint, and we’ve listed just a few of them below:

  •    Burrowing Owl Winery
  •    Greensand Ridge
  •    Forest Gin
  •    Chase Distillery
  •    Dalston’s

Each of these producers has the benefit of being sustainable, as well as producing great tasting products with exciting and unique branding; therefore appealing to all customer types. Greensand Ridge is one of our newest brands whose product offering is well thought out and, quite frankly, delicious. Also make sure to take a look at Dalston's via our Producer pages. They're a soft drinks brand who we're very excited about. 

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