Preserving our beautiful Earth for future generations is incredibly important to us. We know that every decision and every action we take impacts the world around us. Sustainability is achieved through careful consideration of every aspect of our business. In addition to the efforts below, we are always adding new ways to improve our green strategy. We hope to inspire our community to join us in reducing environmental impact.
We are proud to have received the Green Brewery of the Year Award from the Virginia Green Travel Alliance in both 2015 and 2016. Virginia Green is an amazing organization that connects the public with green businesses in the tourism, restaurant, and hospitality industries. There are three main aspects of our business that were considered - the brewery, the restaurant, and the offices. Many of our environmental strategies overlap all three areas of the company.
Sustainability is built into every part of our process that finishes with fresh, delicious beer. Beginning with bags of grain - all the way to your favorite brew, our brewing and packaging departments have green systems in place for the entire journey.
The cycle of boiling-and-cooling essential to beer making is made more efficient by the use of heat exchangers, which heat water slated to be boiled with the excess heat from liquid that needs to be cooled.
Our water comes from on-site wells, so water conservation is enormously important to us. We have streamlined all cleaning, brewing, and maintenance procedures to be as water-efficient as possible. Flow meters are installed on all appropriate equipment so that major water losses can be quickly identified and stopped.
Hundreds of pounds of spent grain are produced on brew days, but we’ve found many uses for that! Most of it goes to a local beef farmer for feed. (It’s high in protein, fiber, and minerals.) This farmer provides beef for our restaurant, thus creating a closed loop. We also use spent grain as chicken feed for our hopyard flock, and in our bakery. (More about these in a minute.)
Wild Wolf Brewing Company made the decision to package beer in cans, rather than bottles. Cans are nearly 50% lighter than bottles, so less fuel is needed for shipping. They’re also easy to recycle; plus they’re better for the beer! Beer’s worst enemy is light – it’s the evil force behind “skunking” – and cans keep out light entirely. (Skunking is not caused by temperature fluctuations. True fact.)
We use Pak-Tek brand six pack carriers for our cans. They are reusable, recyclable, and made from 96% recycled content. We don’t waste resources on the cardboard six pack boxes needed for bottles, and our cases (24 pks.) of cans are shipped on trays instead of inside large boxes.
But what about our restaurant? We are taking farm-to-fork seriously. Not only is local food more sustainable (reduced transportation fuel needs, plus better farming practices), it tastes better because it’s fresher. Most of our pork, beef, chicken, and produce is sourced within 30 miles of here, and we try to keep the rest under 50 miles. We are proud of the exquisite cuisine that Chef Chris Jack and his team prepare daily!