When we think of sustainability, we often focus on the environment. As it should be. For us, sustainability is certainly centered on our environmental footprint, but we have expanded it to include our connection to our community and how we support our team. Collectively, each of these pillars support an ethos of long-term symbiotic health that permeates our brewery and greater community.
We plan on being here for a long time, so we make decisions that will have lasting impact.
Making The Right Choices
One of the first things we did when we opened our brewery was team up with a small but ambitious company called Geazone, a start-up eco-courier who began by delivering our beer by bicycle to Victoria’s downtown core. As we grew, so too did Geazone. They became our delivery partner for the North Island, using electric and low-impact vehicles to bring our beer to stores, pubs and restaurants. More recently, Geazone became our delivery partner in Vancouver and has taken over the major routes throughout the city.
We take every opportunity possible to utilize technical advances in the ultimate reduction of our environmental footprint.
- We have developed a heat recovery system on our glycol chillers that captures energy that would otherwise have gone into the atmosphere.
- Advanced Ozone system: replacing harsh sanitizing chemicals with ozone enriched water.
- We naturally carbonate all our beers, reducing the amount of CO2 required.
- We installed LED lighting throughout the entire facility.
- We invested in Aquatherm insulated piping to minimize temperature losses.
- We have installed a water recapturing system to reduce water consumption.
- We have implemented a stringent effluent control and monitoring program.
- We have updated our entire electrical system to reduce consumption and gain efficiencies.
Brewery To Farm To Table
Over the years we have entered into a collaborative relationship with a number of local farmers to whom we donate our spent malted barley and yeast from our brewing process. In return these farmers cart it all away for us and feed their livestock with it. (Their animals love when we brew Dark Matter.) To close the circle, we frequently purchase food for our team from these same farmers.
Throughout European history, every village had its own bakery, butcher shop and brewery. Out of necessity people supported local businesses and enjoyed fresh and local nourishment. In North America, that relationship diminished after World War II when the brewery industry consolidated into a select few macro brewing factories that still dominate today. With the emergence of craft breweries in the 1980s, we began recapturing the community connection, and in that respect, we are enjoying a return to tradition.
We live by these community based values. We prioritize developing local business relationships whenever possible. Some of our community partners have creatively used our beer to make their own products, such as sausage, ice cream and even soap! Many of our partners are small family run businesses that provide us with things like silk screened apparel, marketing materials, fresh hops and local honey. We also partner with some larger local businesses that build world class brewing equipment. Additionally, we have fostered great relationships with many local tradespeople whose expertise we value tremendously.
Striving to Become Our Better Selves
Supporting Our Team
It has long been one of our goals to build a company that we would want to work for and this is always top of mind. The team we have been lucky enough to surround ourselves with is an eclectic collection of fantastic individuals.
With a continually growing team, we strive to create a workspace that is supportive and sustainable for the long-term. That means listening and acting upon people’s ideas. That means involving people in decisions large and small. It means fostering individual professional growth to allow for the pursuit of excellence and helping each individual become their better selves.
Paying It Forward: Fairweather Brewing Company
Several years ago we outgrew our original brewing system and rather than simply putting it up for sale, we helped a fellow brewer get their start in this industry. It has developed into a great camaraderie between Hoyne Brewing and Fairweather Brewing Company in Ontario.