Brewing Sustainably: Thisted Bryghus – A Modern Brewery

Article by Victor Dalum

Thisted Bryghus – A Modern Brewery

Today we are tapping into the Danish craft brewing scene with Thisted Bryghus. Prepare to sip on some sudsy wisdom as we hop into the world of Thisted Bryghus, where they have mastered the art of pouring sustainability into their products and have managed to deliver a positive result, despite a volatile market.

Thisted Bryghus takes great pride in their craft, and they are creating a legacy that has been bubbling since 1902. A lot has changed in the brewery since then, and today we will take a deep dive into their sustainability initiatives and learn how these initiatives have impacted the brewery. We will focus on two of the pillars of sustainability, environmental sustainability, and economic sustainability. Join us as we raise a glass to their sustainability journey and explore how they have kept their brewery green and their profits golden, and how there is a correlation between this, because as Chris Lewington, founder of Brew Resourceful, said: You can’t afford, not to be sustainable.

Thisted Bryghus’ new brewery resembles their modern brewing style

Thisted Bryghus’ new brewery resembles their modern brewing style – Photo by Bertel Bolt

One Man’s Trash is Another Man’s Treasure

DALUM CO2 Recovery Plant

Thisted Bryghus CEO, Aage Svenningsen, says that they have invested in sustainability to strengthen their position on the market and to pull the brewery in a more sustainable direction. So, which initiatives has Thisted Bryghus taken to brew sustainably and responsively? Thisted Bryghus has found a way to utilize their resources to the fullest. By utilizing their residual resources, they work with both the economic and environmental pillars of sustainability. Firstly, Thisted Bryghus has installed two DALUM CO2 Recovery Plants at their brewery. DALUM Beverage Equipment manufactures groundbreaking CO2 recovery technology for craft breweries. With the plant, Production Manager Theis Dahlgaard can capture CO2 from fermentation, the plant purifies it, liquefies it and collects it in a CO2 tank. Thisted Bryghus then uses the clean CO2 for their beer and soda productions. As a result, Thisted Bryghus has taken control over their own CO2 supply, and almost eliminated the need to purchase CO2 for both their beer and soda production. This way, Thisted Bryghus is not dependent on a very volatile CO2 market and saves the money they otherwise would have spent on CO2. Not only does this save Thisted Bryghus tens of thousands of Euros every year, but it also saves the environment for an estimate of 240 tonnes CO2 each year, as 1 tonne recovered is equivalent to 2 tonnes reduced footprint. To put this in perspective, 240 tonnes CO2 is equivalent to the emission of 127,786 litres of gasoline consumed.

To Brew sustainably, Thisted Bryghus has installed two DALUM CO2 Recovery Units

Two DALUM Craft Plants at Thisted Bryghus

Gin and Snaps

However, Thisted Bryghus’ circular use of resources is not only evident with their CO2 recovery. They have recently added new products to their portfolio; gin, and snaps. They use the alcohol from the leftover yeast to make their gin and snaps. Production Manager Theis Damgaard explains:

 The yeast contains a large amount of residual beer and yeast, which used to be poured directly down the drain, and this is not unusual, because virtually all breweries do this.

Theis explains that the leftover yeast cannot be used to produce beer, as it does not taste like regular beer. However, the alcohol from it is just fine and can be used at the distillery Branderiet i Brande. This way Thisted Bryghus has given new life to the leftover yeast and has expanded their product portfolio.

Sunshine in Your Stein

The initiatives above are more than most breweries have done, however, Thisted Bryghus is not satisfied. They are always looking for new opportunities to contribute positively to a green transition and save costs at the same time. This is the reason they installed solar panels on the roof of their facilities. CEO Aage Svenningsen explains:

The solar panels also contribute to our green profile, as we produce around 150 kW of power, which covers approx. 15% of our electricity consumption. In doing so, the solar plant is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by 39.5 tonnes annually. This investment strengthens our environmental profile and demonstrates our commitment to keep up with the green transition and contribute to local efforts for the environment.

The picture shows Thisted beers, that are brewed sustainably with solar power

Thisted Bryghus uses solar panels to power their production.

Impact on The Brewery

We know that the initiatives by Thisted Bryghus save them a considerable amount of money each year. Furthermore, they keep down their CO2 emission and save the environment by an estimate of 150-tonnes CO2 each year with their CO2 Recovery Plants, and their solar panels were expected to reduce the CO2 emission a further 39.5 tonnes annually. Just these two initiatives by Thisted Bryghus alone save the environment for what would have been an emission of about 159.5 tonnes CO2 each year. We spoke with Thisted Bryghus’ CEO Aage Svenningsen about the further impact of the sustainability initiatives:

“I am pleased to share that our customers have responded enthusiastically to our sustainability initiatives. Their positive feedback reinforces our commitment, and we are excited to announce that we will be introducing even more environmentally-friendly measures in the future.”

CEO Aage Svenningsen concludes with pride: “For us, it is important to remain loyal to our quality products while also taking a step in the green direction with solar panels on the roof and CO2 capture from our fermentation tanks.”