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The Alchemist recycles carbon dioxide in beer production

Published: Oct. 22, 2021 at 9:16 AM EDT
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STOWE, Vt. (WCAX) - A carbon diocide recycling process is up and running at The Alchemist Brewery in Stowe and its goal is to help the planet.

“It was something we were interested in when we were planning the build-out of this facility,” said Joel Hartman, the operations manager for The Alchemist.

The system by Earthly Labs captures carbon dioxide during fermentation, processes and cools it, then allows the brewery to use it in the packaging process.

Carbon dioxide is used for things like carbonating the beer, purging the can with the liquid, and head pressure pushing the beer from tanks into packaging.

The Alchemist uses about 500 pounds of liquid CO2 a week, and this system creates an excess of that, meaning some does make it into the atmosphere still.

But Hartman says any carbon dioxide they can stop from making it into the atmosphere is a good thing. “The reality is that climate change is happening and it’s affecting every part of the world and by reducing our contribution to climate change we are ensuring a better future for our industry,” said Hartman.

The system costs about $120,000, so the system can pay for itself over time. “It is virtually no extra work for our process and for our brewers and it just sort of sits in the corner and does its thing,” said Hartman.

They are also working on getting another system, same as this one set up and launched in their Waterbury location as well.

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