IN OUR BREWERIES
Our brewers are committed to sustainability and good stewardship in our beer production. This includes brewing efficiently in order to reduce the use of water, reducing and recycling waste, using organic and regional ingredients, and participating in environmental programs.
The average brewery uses 5x more water than is enjoyed in a finished pint. In addition to the water in the actual beer you drink, large amounts are used for cooling the hot wort and cleaning the tanks. We have incorporated three processes to reduce water use:
- Our brewery has a hot liquor tank which catches excess water used during cooling and stores it for the next brew day.
- We use a clean in place (CIP) system to clean our tanks. Treated water is looped with a pump and used to clean all the tanks.
- We purchase Bonneville Environmental Foundation Water Certificates. For every gallon of water used in our brewery, the amount is diverted back to rivers in need through these certificates.
WASTE REDUCTION & RECYCLING
The brewing process produces several byproducts, including wastewater and spent grains. In addition to water conservation, we also recycle our spent grains in partnership with local farmers. On average, we use over 1,000 lbs of grain to brew one batch of beer in our production brewery—and sometimes up to 2,500 lbs! Once utilized, these spent grains are given to a local farmers for feed, saving them from the landfill.
We are privileged to work with creative people that are passionate about owning solutions to sustainability challenges. One of our team members even recycles used grain bags by turning them into curtains and grocery bags!
ORGANIC & REGIONAL INGREDIENTS
We brew with organic, regional grains whenever possible, and nearly all of the fruit in our beer is grown in Oregon—much of it within 4 miles of our brewery, at Stahlbush Island Farms. We also often look to locally gathered honey as an adjunct during fermentation, barrel maturing, or bottle conditioning.
When available, we use organic cleaners—aiming to use the least amount possible.
IN OUR RESTAURANTS
The restaurant staff is also committed to sustainability. In addition to participating in the above environmental programs, we choose to use local and regional ingredients when feasible, reduce water and energy use, and participate in recycling and composting programs.
LOCAL & REGIONAL INGREDIENTS
We love to use local and regional ingredients in our food as often as we're able to. In addition to lowering our environmental footprint, cooking with regional ingredients promotes a vibrant local economy and improves both the flavor and nutrition in our dishes. For example, we have committed to Painted Hills Natural Beef for our hand-spanked burgers and steak. Their cattle is raised on a vegetarian diet, with no hormones or artificial ingredients. Other local products include honey, seasonal fruits and vegetables, nuts, cheeses, wine, cider, and spirits. Learn more about our local partners below.
Just like our brewing team, our restaurant staff is trained to conserve. We use energy-efficient lighting that is only on when needed, attend to running water, turn on cooking elements only when needed, and will only bring water to you upon request.
RECYCLING & COMPOSTING
We have participated in Allied Waste’s Post-consumer Waste Composting program since its inception in December 2009. Through it, we are able to compost all of our food prep scraps, food left on our diner's plates, and paper towels & napkins. Once a week, this material is taken to Allied Waste's composting facility, located 10 miles north of Corvallis. Once converted into compost, it is returned to Corvallis for use by local farmers and gardeners. Since 2009, we have been able to divert a large portion of our waste to compost, rather than landfills!
As a styrofoam-free restaurant, even our to-go containers are compostable! Simply put them in your home composting bins and let microorganisms go to work on transforming packaging into fertilizer.
All of our used cooking oil is recycled into an alternative fuel, thanks to our friends over at Enviofuel. We also recycle everything else that is recyclable, such as glass, newspaper, old menus, wine corks, plastic bags, and cardboard packaging.
We participate in several regional environmental programs, which help reduce or offset energy consumption across our entire company.
PACIFIC POWER'S "BLUE SKY" PROGRAM
Though this program, a portion of our electricity use is sourced from renewable energy such as wind power. This reduces the carbon emission from typical energy production. For information go to PacificPower.net. In 2011 Block 15 supported 56,163 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy avoiding the release of 67,305 pounds of carbon dioxide. This equates to not driving a car 68,432 miles.
NW NATURAL GAS' "SMART ENERGY" PROGRAM
through which we purchase “carbon off sets.” These off sets include planting trees, which absorb carbon dioxide, and investing in renewable natural gas, such as capturing methane from cow crap… seriously check it out at NWNatural.com.
BONNEVILLE ENVIRONMENTAL FOUNDATION'S "WATER RESTORATION CERTIFICATES"
We purchase water restoration certificates (WRCs) through Bonneville Environmental Foundation's Water Restoration Certificates program. This program allows us to balance our water consumption by returning a large portion of the water we use back to the environment.