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Continuous improvement in water efficiency

Water plant

Since 2003, our operations in Slovakia have reduced consumption by 10% to 4.67 hectolitres of water per hectolitre of beer produced, comparing favourably to the industry average.

During this time, at our brewhouse in Saris we have replaced our lauter tun, wort kettle and heat recuperation system to reduce water use. We have also installed a more efficient bottle washer and now use the same water to clean the inside and then the outside of our kegs, so reducing water and chemical use.

Improvements in efficiency are not just about investing in new technology and improving our processes. We are also working hard to make sure all our employees are aware of why we are looking to reduce our consumption and the part they can play.

Improving energy efficiency at Birra Peroni

Beer brewery

Since 1999, Birra Peroni has more than halved its energy consumption and now uses 110 MJ per hectolitre of beer produced.

Much of this saving has come from capital investment such as installing a new brewhouse and pasteuriser line, improving the wastewater treatment plant and increasing the recovery of biogas.

We are now working with engineering consultants Danfoss to raise awareness and improve energy efficiency through small-scale interventions. Danfoss has audited our plants, processes and systems. Having identified further potential savings, collated baseline data and finalised the costs, we are now working to implement these improvements.

Dreher - our latest plant to use biogas


In January 2008, Dreher in Hungary became one of the growing number of breweries in the group to introduce a wastewater treatment and biogas generation plant.

Biogas is a by-product of anaerobic wastewater treatment and can be burned to produce energy.

Energy produced from burning the biogas should allow Dreher to reduce its traditional annual energy consumption and the related carbon dioxide emissions by 10%. It also leads to a reduction in the amount of organic matter released to the environment.

Packaging at Dreher Breweries 00:04:36

Packaging at Dreher Breweries


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Reducing waste in Hungary

Our Hungarian operation Dreher recycles, reuses or sells over 99% of its waste.

As well as helping the business to meet strict regulations on waste, other benefits include reinforcing our position as a responsible company, meeting public expectations and saving costs.

Packaging waste is segregated into a dozen different categories to be baled, compressed and then recycled while the filtration medium, kieselguhr, is now composted instead of being sent to landfill. The brewery is a registered producer of animal feed, so spent grains and yeast can be sold for agricultural purposes. Spent yeast is also sold for other brewing applications.

Hazardous waste is recycled where possible, for example, waste oils are regenerated and electric and electronic waste (old refrigerators and coolers) is disassembled and partly recycled.

Much of the waste that cannot be recycled in these or other ways is incinerated and the heat recovered.

Support for new enterprises in Hungary

The Hungarian business Dreher Breweries is a firm believer in the country’s entrepreneurial spirit and is keen to improve the business skills of young Hungarians.

Its ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Future’ competition invites university and college students majoring in business studies to come up with an idea to launch their dream enterprise. The three winners receive start-up capital totalling over US$37,000 along with six months’ free consultancy in accountancy, legal and tax matters.

Under the motto, ‘Implement your dream enterprise’, the second competition in 2007 attracted nearly 80 entries from 18 institutions of higher education. These were evaluated by a professional jury and the first prize, along with seed capital of over US$23,000, went to a student at Budapest University of Technology and Economics who came up with a unique pen to improve the handwriting of children, as well as adults with reduced writing skills.

Human rights in the Czech Republic

Poster for the 'One World' international documentary film festival

Plzenský Prazdroj is an ‘employer of choice’ in the Czech Republic. Underpinning this recognition is its ethics policy, compliance with which is overseen by a senior level Ethics Committee. This is supported by a whistleblowing line and response team which investigates unethical behaviour. Employee-elected ombudsmen proactively monitor for potential ethical and human rights issues and represent the employees’ interests.

The business has developed close working relationships with trade unions; as well as the annual collective bargaining negotiations, management meets with union representatives quarterly. In addition, a Health and Safety committee composed of employees and trade union representatives supervises working environment standards and their improvement.

The business promotes human rights beyond its own operations and is the general partner of the 'One World’ international documentary film festival, which aims to foster cross-cultural understanding and increase public awareness of human rights.

Our priorities: Human rights

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People using a SABMiller community centre

Leading with a longer term view

Boardroom meeting

In 2007, our European business established a new development programme for senior executives with the Saïd business school in Oxford.

Drawing on expertise from Oxford University faculties and other specialists, the tailor-made programme focuses on long-term strategic issues that will affect society over the next 5 to 10 years. Subjects covered are wide ranging, including climate change, alternative energy sources, stem cell research, water resources, the ageing population and the rise of China and India.

Rather than focusing on short-term return on investment, this innovative programme is intended to shift attention from day-to-day operational pressures to inform, challenge, provoke debate and develop critical thinking that will pay off over the long term. The programme will be extended to other senior managers in 2008.