Energy Efficiency Improvement and Cost Saving Opportunities for Breweries: An ENERGY STAR(R) Guide for Energy and Plant Managers

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Annually, breweries in the United States spend over $200 million on energy. Energy consumption is equal to 38% of the production costs of beer, making energy efficiency improvement an important way to reduce costs, especially in times of high energy price volatility. After a summary of the beer making process and energy use, we examine energy efficiency opportunities available for breweries. We provide specific primary energy savings for each energy efficiency measure based on case studies that have implemented the measures, as well as references to technical literature. If available, we have also listed typical payback periods. Our findings suggest that given available technology, there are still opportunities to reduce energy consumption cost-effectively in the brewing industry. Brewers value highly the quality, taste and drinkability of their beer. Brewing companies have and are expected to continue to spend capital on cost-effective energy conservation measures that meet these quality, taste and drinkability requirements. For individual plants, further research on the economics of the measures, as well as their applicability to different brewing practices, is needed to assess implementation of selected technologies.

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