The biggest standalone brewery in the nation just trashed its landfill. Translation: 99.7 percent of residual refuse at the Golden, Colo., MillerCoors facility is now being recycled or reused (for instance, it’s feeding used grain to cows). The remaining 0.3 percent is shipped to Oklahoma and burned as fuel. The plant churns out 1,620 tons of waste annually, so that’s about 3 million pounds of refuse it’s keeping out of the landfill.
The nation’s leader in schwaggy beer aims to squash landfills at the rest of its plants across the U.S. by 2016. And MillerCoors is hardly alone in trying to go garbage-free. Missouri brewery Boulevard Brewery did so in 2011; Colorado’s Odell Brewing is on track for 2014.
MillerCoors production specialist Kelly Harris spearheaded the no-landfill project, with the goal of making it simple, because “Nobody likes change,” as he told NBC:
The system he implemented revolves around the use of color-coded bins. Yellow is for aluminum, for example. True trash goes into the red bins, a color meant to make people think twice before throwing anything into it. The company spent about $1 million on new bins and paint to get the job done.
Did someone say color-coded recycling bins?