The world’s number-three brewer acquired John Smith's, one of the largest breweries in the UK, in 2008. Located in Tadcaster, Yorkshire, the 100-year old plant frequently exceeded the ammonia discharge levels permitted by the UK Environment Agency.
Simultaneously satisfying environmental requirements while sustaining competitiveness was a major challenge for Heineken. Our primary objective was to lower the ammonia content in discharged water so as to achieve compliance, while also devising ways to improve overall efficiency and environmental performance.
Heineken entrusted SUEZ with the operation and maintenance of the John Smith's brewery’s effluent treatment plant.
Our specialists in water cycle management and organic waste treatment developed a solution to raise its performance. This was based on two approaches: improving effluent quality and recycling organic waste.
SUEZ worked closely with Heineken to analyse and optimise the operating processes used in the effluent treatment plant. We developed an innovative solution:
SUEZ also proposed two technologies to enable energy production:
SUEZ helped Heineken improve both its environmental and economic performance. Our solution achieved compliance while significantly reducing energy consumption.
The levels of ammonia in the effluent were rapidly brought under control and no further irregularities were detected.
A 100-year-old brewery also became a far more efficient production plant capable of generating its own power. John Smith's virtuous cycle, enabling it to manage energy and raw materials more sustainable.
Our response to the global brewer’s complex environmental challenge was applauded by the Environment Agency as a solution "which nobody else had achieved before".