Department of Business Development and Technology

Diego Pacheco

The missing link of circularity in small breweries’ value chains: Unveiling strategies for waste management and biomass valorization

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Samuel Vinícius Bonato, Federal University of Rio Grande
  • ,
  • Diego Pacheco
  • Carla Schwengber ten Caten, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul
  • ,
  • Dario Caro

Despite the large quantities and possibilities of reuse of the by-products (solids and liquids) generated by the brewing industry, the proper disposal of these by-products has imposed severe problems for circular and cleaner production transitions worldwide. These challenges are still more salient for the small breweries due to the recognized lack of resources, such as knowledge, finances, and skilled staff. To address this problem, this article aims to identify sustainable strategies for waste management and biomass valorization that can be implemented in the value chain of small breweries. A mixed-method approach was implemented for the data collection and analysis to expand the evidence of the findings, including interviews with 18 small breweries and six specialists in the sector. We found that breweries mainly dispose of the by-products for animal feeding, although industry experts and the specialized literature indicate that at least 21 reuse and recycling alternatives have not been implemented in the value chain. Findings add to the literature five new alternatives informed by companies and six informed by experts for circular and cleaner production realization in small breweries’ value chains. Furthermore, the article proposes a novel conceptual model to facilitate waste management and biomass valorization realization in small breweries value chains. Findings provide new insights that complement previous studies to overcome the challenges for waste management and biomass valorization in the sector. The article offers implications for theory, policymakers and managerial practice with repercussions on the production, environmental and financial issues.

Original languageEnglish
Article number130275
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

    Research areas

  • Biomass valorization, Brewery, Circular economy, Cleaner production, Sustainability, Waste management

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