In an effort  to go more "Green," Bell's Brewery has teamed up with other breweries to form a Kalamazoo-area recycling “co-op,” that incudes six local craft breweries and will divert about 26,000 lbs. of plastic per year from Michigan landfills. Joining Bell's on this quest will be One Well Brewing, Latitude 42 Brewing Company, Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s sustainable brewing program, Handmap Brewing (Battle Creek), Final Gravity, Territorial Brewing Company (also located in Battle Creek) and natural hops, spice and herb extract provider Kalsec. The program is a reflection of that developed by Great Divide Brewing Co. In a Facebook post, they elaborated on their mission:

We at Bell's have teamed up with other breweries and businesses in our area to help divert more plastic from our landfills. Led by the Kalamazoo Nature Center and us, this Kalamazoo-area recycling “co-op,” that incudes six local craft breweries, will divert about 26,000 lbs. of plastic per year from Michigan landfills.

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How Will These Breweries Be Going More Green Exactly

Bell's Brewery was recently awarded the U.S. EPA Energy Star Challenge award for their sustainability efforts over the past few years. This new effort is going to be a huge step in the right direction for the city of Kalamazoo. Backed by the Kalamazoo Nature center, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) has gifted a $12,000 Recycling Market Development Grant for this project, which was used to purchase two balers.

How Do These Balers Help Keep Bell's & Other Breweries More Green

Kate Martini, Bell’s Sustainability Specialist provided some information on how these two balers will help in their cause:

These bags, which also include super sacks (bulk bags that can hold up to 3,000 lbs.) are recyclable. The problem was that up until now, none of us had access to a viable recycling outlet for it. In order to make this material viable for a recycler, we needed to have truck loads of the stuff, which most breweries do not generate on their own, even here at Bell’s. We also needed equipment to bale all of it for transport

With the purchase of the new bailing equipment, minimum quantities for them to be eligible for recycling will be met.

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