Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s biggest brewer, has announced that it aims to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by a quarter by 2025 and help thousands of farmers cope with disruptions to water supplies stoked by global warming.
The Belgium-based brewer also said it would make all its packaging either returnable or from mainly recycled materials by 2025 and was on track to achieve a goal set in 2017 to get all the electricity it buys from renewable sources by 2025.
“It’s a win-win … It’s good for business and good for the environment,” said chief executive Carlos Brito. Brito said AB InBev was vulnerable to environmental changes since it relied on barley, malt, hops, wheat, rice and other products grown by 50,000 farmers in dozens of nations. “If the environment has a problem, we have a problem,” he said in a telephone interview from New York of disruptions such as heatwaves, droughts, floods and storms linked to climate change.
AB InBev plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2025, to the equivalent of 37.93 kg (83.62 lb) of carbon dioxide to produce a hectoliter of beer from 50.57 kg in 2017.
Brito said the new goals for 2025 would include suppliers and wholesalers – beyond the company’s previous environmental targets that focused on the company’s core operations.
The firm aims to cut water use, including by “restoring watersheds in areas that need it most, and improving water availability and quality for our communities,” it said. It would work to ensure all farmers had needed skills by 2025.
AB InBev was one of 74 companies on an “A list” for water reporting in 2017 from the independent London-based CDP, which monitors environmental performance by thousands of companies.
It got a “B” for reporting on climate change in 2017 after an “A minus” in 2016.
The firm will seek new ideas by scientists and entrepreneurs for everything from plastics recycling to better soil management in a project called the ‘100+ Sustainability Accelerator’.