Insert your own idiom here — beauty is in the eye of the beholder, maybe? What at first glance appear to be rejected Kellogg’s cornflakes — too big, too small, or too burnt — are being spun into liquid gold. In this case, craft beer. Kellogg’s is collaborating with Manchester, England-based Seven Bro7hers Brewery to turn their unwanted cereal into beer. 

The grain used in the brewery’s “Throw Away IPA” is made up of 30% upcycled cornflakes and 70% wheat, according to Kellogg’s. The color of the beer is deemed “cornflake golden,” and the flakes, added to the mash, are said to add sweetness to the IPA’s taste. 

It’s just one beer, true (although the brewery’s made others using cornflakes in the past, including a milkshake IPA), but it’s part of a much larger global initiative where breweries are using sustainable ingredients, packaging, and brewing methods, incorporating virtually all methods of the brewing process, to make a product that’s as eco-friendly as it is delicious.

“Kellogg’s is working hard to eliminate food waste in our manufacturing processes and give our consumers the wholesome products they love with minimum impact on the planet,” Corporate Social Responsibility Manager for Kellogg’s UK, Kate Prince, told Telegraph. “Our approach has delivered a 12.5% reduction on food waste in our UK sites this year.”

Seven Bro7thers and Kellogg’s have been in the spotlight this week for launching a collaboration that’s palatable, unique, and good for the planet. But they’re not the only ones at the forefront of sustainability in beer.

Toast Ale, another U.K.-based business, brews craft beer with surplus bread that would otherwise end up in a landfill (next to piles of Kellogg’s cornflakes, no less). Their website explains,

Did you know that one-third of all food is wasted? That’s 1.3 billion tonnes wasted globally every year – 15 million tonnes in the UK. Food production is the single biggest impact that humanity has on the environment as it uses huge amounts of land, fuel and energy. We’re trashing the planet to produce food that no-one eats.

Even Corona’s dabbling in the production of plastic-free, biodegradable six-pack rings. Anheuser-Busch hopes to rely completely on renewable energy by 2025. 

And that’s great, but back to independent craft breweries: Alaskan Brewing Co. brews “Beer Powered Beer,” using a carbon dioxide reclamation system to capture and clean CO2 in the brewing process, and a water-saving mash filter press, and a steam boiler that’s filled by their own spent grain. Brooklyn Brewery fuels their production entirely by wind energy. And, ahead of Corona, Saltwater Brewery in Florida is already utilizing the world’s first biodegradable six-pack rings.

Oh, wait, beauty is in the eye of the beer-holder! Bad beer puns aside, and domestic/independent differences aside, the world will already be a much better place in 2019 if more breweries take advantage of the myriad of sustainable practices that have already been carved out for them. Lots of the eco-friendly practices being used are really do-able, regardless of a brewery’s size or budget. Eat Kellogg’s, drink beer, and then think about how your beer was made.

Kristin Helf
Author: Kristin Helf

Kristin is a writer and picture-taker in Ocean City, Maryland. She likes puppies, pumpkin ales and watching movies for the Ocean City Film Festival in her spare time.

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