Leaving a Legacy, Not a Footprint at Slane Distillery
2017 > Ongoing
At Slane Distillery, we constantly work toward a lower carbon footprint, positive biodiversity, water stewardship, and circularity.
- Climate Action
Our distillery was designed and built with energy efficiency in mind. Heat recovery systems are built into the production process, allowing cooling process lines to simultaneously preheat lines that need temperature increases. In support of our commitment for zero emissions transportation, bicycle racks were installed at the distillery for use by both employees and visitors.
Slane Distillery restored a section of Harlinstown Stream, a tributary of the Boyne River and included the construction of a salmon ladder. The salmon ladder allows salmon and other fish to bypass the mill pond (used for fire suppression water) and travel upstream during spawning season. The salmon ladder was designed and constructed to mimic a natural stream environment and improve the biodiversity of this section of the water on site.
In early 2021, Slane Distillery partnered with the Slane Castle Estate to plant native tree species on 6.65 hectares of estate property, creating a new native woodland alongside the barley fields. This is the first step in a 10-year forestry management program designed to improve biodiversity and other environmental impacts within the Estate woodlands.
General office and homeplace waste materials are segregated and sent for recycling or waste-to-energy. Grain by-product from the distillation process, called draff, is provided to local farmers, who use it for animal feed. Wooden exteriors have been used in many on-site buildings to reduce the carbon footprint of these structures and all existing heritage buildings were faithfully restored using traditional building techniques and materials.
- Water Stewardship
We operate a catchment system to collect and store rainwater off the roofs of the distillery buildings, which is treated and used for process water. This reduces the amount of water that is drawn from the Boyne River.
- Origin Green
Slane Distillery is a member of Origin Green, Ireland’s food and drink sustainability program. Through this initiative, we work to set and achieve measurable sustainability targets that respect the environment and serve local communities more effectively
Slane Distillery is a zero waste to landfill facility. In addition, we have built an anaerobic digester to convert distillation by-products into biogas. Once commissioned, the biogas will be used on site to heat the stills, significantly reducing our carbon emissions.
Measurement & evaluation
As part of our overall commitment to strong environmental practices, Brown‑Forman holds itself accountable to global aspirations like the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The baseline for Brown‑Forman’s Sustainability Goals come from the 2020 fiscal year and reporting will follow the company’s fiscal year financial reporting.
Brown-Forman’s climate action progress is evaluated by CDP annually. Additionally, we report in accordance with GRI and SASB on broader sustainability topics, which are publicly available documents. Our progress is also reported in an annual ESG Scorecard and Annual Report, both available on our website.