Bulk Distributor Nov/Dec 2021 - Page 15

November / December 2021

Bulk Liners & Flexitanks

Heineken goes bulk and green

Heineken is delivering bulk beer to cafes in Amsterdam with what it claims is the world ’ s first electrically powered mini tank beer truck
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The following event dates were correct at time to going to press
ECTA Annual Meeting 18 November 2021 Düsseldorf , Germany www . ecta . com
World Bulk Wine Exhibition 22-23 November 2021 Amsterdam , Netherlands www . worldbulkwine . com
GPCA Annual Forum 7 – 9 December 2021 Dubai , UAE www . gpca . org . ae
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Intermodal Europe 8-10 November 2022 Amsterdam , Netherlands www . intermodal-events . com

As one of the world ’ s largest brewing conglomerates the Heineken logo is recognised across the globe . And in its home city of Amsterdam , that same marque is ubiquitous . Now , the company is delivering bulk beer to cafes in the historic heart of Amsterdam with what it claims is the world ’ s first electrically powered mini tank beer truck . “ Heineken has strong green ambitions . We look at the entire value chain , and of course , this also applies to clean transport . I am pleased that we can now sustainably transport large volumes such as tanked beer ,” said general manager Hans Böhm . It is not just about reducing emissions and soot particles , noise pollution is also significantly reduced because the new electric truck is extremely quiet . “ This new mode of transport improves the quality of life for everyone who lives , works or visits the city centre . An additional advantage is that thanks to this leap forward you can enjoy a beer even better on , for example , a terrace . I ’ d rather hear smiling people and beautiful music than a roaring engine that also stinks and suffocates ,” Böhm added . What makes Heineken ’ s move even more interesting in that it is driven – metaphorically and literally – by an innovative logistics solution . The truck was developed in collaboration between Heineken Netherlands , Abrex Logistics and Duotank , a producer of tank-beer systems used in the hospitality industry , stadiums , concert halls , and public events . Duotank uses a ‘ Bag-In-Tank ’ liner system as an environmentally-friendly solution for draft beer . The beer is kept under pressure in the tank with compressed air instead of CO2 , and because it is in an airtight bag , the compressed air cannot reach the beer . The system works with a fully recyclable bag , so that the tank does not have to be cleaned before each filling with chemical cleaning agents . In so doing , Duotank claims this saves 0.5kg CO2 per hectolitre of beer that is tapped compared with an equivalent amount of traditional keg beer . Moreover , the quality of the beer is also preserved for longer , Duotank maintains . As part of the sustainability programme Duotank has developed a recycling channel for the liners . This helps breweries not only become more sustainable it could help them avoid potential extra taxes on plastic waste . Currently liners are collected as part of common plastic waste . This waste is not recycled , as many believe , but incinerated because the different types of plastic in this waste cannot be separated . To be able to recycle plastic users need to know exactly what composition the plastic has and what kind of contamination it can cause . Duotank solved this issue by forming an alliance with a group of recycling companies and setting up an affordable collection system . The liners are collected at the brewery . A press forms the plastic waste into blocks with an economic size and weight . These blocks can then be collected regionally , which makes transport affordable . Based on purchase volumes of different liner types Duotank determines the plastic and residual waste composition and forwards this to the recycler . Dependent on the composition the recycling company combines different batches of liners ( from other industries , as well ) and forwards these to a number of selected recycling factories in Europe . Then , knowing the exact composition of the supplied plastics the recycling factory can then turn the waste into usable plastic granulate , the base material to produce new plastic products . The recycling company issues a certificate stating that the batch of delivered liners has been converted into reusable plastic granulates . In this way Duotank and its partners say they have made it possible to recycle liners completely and affordably . Heineken ’ s tank beer truck is smaller than a previous iteration and is therefore much more manoeuvrable . In 2020 it was announced that all Heineken beer for the Dutch market would aim for ‘ green ’ status , and logistics is an integral part of that ambition . But , while electric vehicles are quite common in passenger transport , sufficient pulling power in goods transport remains challenging . Significant load weights often have to be divided between several vehicles and journeys for the time being . That also applies to Heineken ; from the company ’ s brewery in Den Bosch , a large truck transports 200 hectolitres of fresh beer to the outskirts of Amsterdam . There , 30 hectolitres are transhipped to the smaller , electric truck , enough to supply approximately five cafes with beer . Once empty , the truck refuels on the edge of the city with both electricity and beer to continue on its way to the historic heart of the Dutch capital . The new trucks are considerably lighter than their predecessors and meet the standard of up to 7.5 tons to protect quays and bridges . In this first phase , two electric tank beer trucks are operating in Amsterdam and Heineken intends to make its vehicle fleet for urban distribution even cleaner and quieter in the coming years . Supplying tank beer in this way is part of Heineken ’ s ‘ Brew a Better World ’ approach in which growth and sustainability go hand in hand . In September , the brewer began shipping beer using a barge propelled by emissions-free energy containers ( see Bulk Distributor , July / August 2021 , p19 ). The Alphenaar shuttles between Heineken ’ s brewery in Zoeterwoude and Port of Rotterdam .

www . heinekennederland . nl www . duotank . com
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With the ‘ Bag-In-Tank ’ liner , draft beer is kept under pressure in the tank with compressed air instead of CO2