Saltwater Brewery, a small local beer brewery located in Florida, was created by a handful of local Floridians whose lives revolve around the ocean. Some are fishermen, some are surfers, but they all have great respect for the ocean and everything in it. The brewery has come up with a new idea that could greatly impact the sanctity of marine life and pollution in the ocean, which is a topic very dear to them.
Last year alone, Americans drank 6.3 billion gallons of beer. Half of all that beer came in cans, most of which were part of a 6-pack held together by the plastic rings. Most of these rings end up in the ocean, and they are not biodegradable, so they end up being eaten by seabirds, marine mammals, and turtles. Over 1 million of these animals eat or become entrapped in these rings, which almost always results in death.
Saltwater Brewery recently introduced their new idea, which is making these rings edible and biodegradable. They take the wheat and barley remnants that are left over from the brewing process and make it into the rings that hold the 6-packs of cans together, which results in an edible, biodegradable, and actually healthy alternative, which can result in hundreds of thousands of saved marine lives.
As of now, Saltwater Brewery is the only brewery to adopt this potentially very impactful method, but if big breweries adopted the method as well, the creation cost would actually be about the same as it currently is with the plastic rings. Ultimately, if this becomes commonplace in the beer industry, there would be little to no difference in production cost and it would have a huge impact on marine life.