In today's climate, incorporating sustainability is a crucial aspect for any business to thrive. It is also increasingly important for organizations to have third-party review to verify its achievements. That's exactly what Sleeman Breweries did for its Guelph facility to become Canada's first brewery to achieve 3RCertified status.
Established in 2012, 3RCertified is a voluntary program originally funded by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation, and Parks that evaluates how organizations manage solid waste using pre-established criteria. Status is awarded at one of four levels based on the total number of points earned following on-site third-party evaluation. 3RCertified also helps business understand their waste diversion and disposal performance, and most importantly, track and measure performance against goals.
"Our approach to waste is to simply avoid it wherever possible," says Dave Klaassen, VP of Operations & Logistics at Sleeman Breweries. "We are proud to offer our customers and employees the knowledge that we are taking active steps to divert as much material as possible from disposal at our Guelph facility, and look forward to continuing to meet our sustainability goals."
"3RCertified is the only program in Canada that directly supports businesses and institutions to measure, report, and improve waste reduction and recycling practices," says Jo-Anne St. Godard, Executive Director, Recycling Council of Ontario. "Sleeman Breweries' 3RCertified Gold achievement is truly exemplary. The care and attention to waste reduction efforts demonstrates their leadership and underpins the potential benefits that comes with it. They are setting an example for their industry and beyond."
Highlights of Sleeman's Waste Reduction Initiatives:
- Celebrating achievement: overall solid waste diversion rate of 98% at the Guelph brewery
- Continuing to improve: long-term organizational commitment and strategy for sustainability practices, including annual goal setting, measurement, and audit of all waste reduction initiatives
- Making sure no delivery truck is ever empty: wood and plastic pallets, top sheets, and tier pads are returned to the supplier at time of delivery of the next shipment
- Avoiding single-use disposal and ensuring reuse: airbags that secure trailer loads are refilled using an on-site air compressor for re-use
- Embracing the sharing economy: crown boxes and liners are offered to employees for personal use or donated to local food rescue agencies
- Proving no item is too small: used gloves are placed in receptacles throughout the facility and sent to a facility for cleaning and reuse
- Collaborating along the supply chain: Sleeman brand glass beer bottles collected by The Beer Store are returned and reused up to 20 times each
Sleeman also looks beyond short-term needs and considers long-term impacts of the goods and services it buys. Sleeman's procurement policy requires vendors to supply goods with minimal packaging, and accept goods for return at end-of-life for reuse and recycling.