10/9/07 Greenpeace Says Anheuser Busch Using Genetically Engineered Rice in Beer, ENN. Greenpeacereleased the results of analyses showing the presence of an experimental genetically engineered (GE) strain of rice at an Anheuser-Busch operated mill in Arkansas that is used to brew Budweiser. An independent laboratory test, commissioned by Greenpeace, detected the presence of GE rice (Bayer LL601) in three out of four samples taken at the mill.
7/31/07 Anheuser-Busch Publishes 2006 Environmental, Health and Safety Report, Environmental Leader. Anheuser-Busch has released its 2006 Environmental, Health and Safety report. In 2006, the nation’s largest brewer says that it generated enough renewable fuel to heat more than 25,000 homes and recycled more than 27 billion cans. In addition, the company says that: (1) Solid waste disposal per net sales declined by 11 percent since 2001. (2) Water use per net sales reduced by 3 percent since 2002. Brewery water use per barrel of beer has declined more than 20 percent since 1990. (3) It recycled approximately 364,000 metric tons of used aluminum beverage containers - 27 billion cans - through its Anheuser-Busch Recycling Corporation subsidiary in 2006 - more cans than Anheuser-Busch breweries use to package their products. Last year, Anheuser-Busch established a goal of reducing absolute greenhouse gas emissions by five percent from its 2005 baseline by 2010. The company also set a goal to increase its use of renewable fuels from 8 to 15 percent in the same time period. Last year Anheuser-Busch began producing two organic beers under the Stone Mill and Green Valley names. Comment: The goals and performance are specific. The company needs third-party certifications for its breweries and ingredients - organic, environmental and workplace certifications.
6/07 Climate Counts: Anheuser-Busch Scores 29/100. Climate Counts gives Anheuser-Busch a rating of 29/100 based on its year-old report from 2006. A new report appeared in July 2007 but the rating has not been updated. Review: 12/22 points. One-time measurement of the impact that it has on global warming, and the company expects to continue its review in the future. Reduce: 11/56 points. General goals to reduce the company's energy use, and has already initiated projects that have resulted in reductions. Policy Stance: 0/10 points. No public information to suggest that Anheuser-Busch supports public policy that addresses climate change. [The company is an EPA Partner, which is a matter of public record.] Report: 3/12 points. Public information available on its efforts to address global warming. Full scorecard here.Comment (March 2008): The carbon footprint of any company depends on what it does. The carbon footprint of a beer company today is surely less important than that of a dairy operation or a meat processor. A brewer buys hops and malted barley and uses a lot of water to process the beer and a lot of cans and bottles to bring the beer to the consumer. Anheuser-Busch is focused exactly on these issues – it recycles more aluminum cans than it uses and it has been focusing on reducing its solid waste and water use. Molson Coors has a higher goal for reduction between 2005 and 2010, but its record in 2000 was much worse and it has some catching up to do. The ClimateCounts scorecard doesn’t include the July 2007 Anheuser-Busch environmental report, only the two previous ones. My reading of publicly available environmental reports is that Anheuser-Busch has a lot it could still do but that it is doing more than the other two largest brewers in the United States. Anheuser-Busch and Molson Coors are both on the EPA Partners list with goals for 2010 on March 17, 2008, but Miller has a goal only through 2006. New information has come out on some significant advances being made by Anheuser-Busch on the solar-energy-grid front.
6/05/06 Anheuser-Busch Releases 2005 Environmental, Heath and Safety Report,CSRwire. The report details the company’s efforts to protect the environment and promote workplace safety. It highlights savings in water and fuel use and a decrease in solid waste disposal through recycling (full report is online at www.ABenvironment.com): (1) Water use reduced by 3.3 percent since 2001, (2) Solid waste disposal declined by 24 percent since 2001, (3) 369,000 metric tons of used aluminum beverage containers was recycled in 2005, more than 125 percent of the cans that Anheuser-Busch breweries use to package their U.S. products. The company says it has met "nearly" all of the goals for 2005 established five years before. One highlight is Anheuser-Busch's new Technology Center which was certified under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System. Comment: The LEED building certification (level is not disclosed) is the kind of third-party certification that builds confidence.
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