University Centre for Energy Efficient Buildings, CTU in Prague organised the Expert Mission in March 2022. An Expert Mission is a detailed study visit from examples of the good practices which were identified in the international RESINDUSTRY project. 

One from the best examples of good practices, A. Le Coq brewery (Estonia) was chosen for the Expert Mission in the Czech Republic. Experts Mr. Ülo Kask, energy auditor and Mr. Erkki Jögi, energy saving project manager in a A. Le Coq brewery provided a tailor made-training about the RES installation and energy savings possibilities in the breweries.   

A. Le Coq was founded in 1807, it is the oldest beverage producer in Estonia, whose product range includes 11 different product groups. The largest of these is the product portfolio of beers, followed by juice, water and soft drinks and the other product groups. A. Le Coq holds the leading position on the Estonian drinks market in the categories of beer, juice, and long drinks and ranks a strong second in the production of water, soft drinks and cider. The company's main resources that can be optimized are water, wastewater, natural gas and electricity. Almost 200 000 m3 of wastewater with the highest price range is directed to city’s sewage network annually. In order to reduce the burden on the urban wastewater network and increase the resource efficiency of the company, it was advised in resource audit to build anaerobic cycle biogas plant. In addition to reducing its environmental impact, the plant is also economically profitable for the company. Some of the natural gas imported to produce heat can be replaced by the biogas produced on site (100% of biogas produced on site is used on site for heating).

A. Le Coq brewery has taken a big step towards reducing our CO2 footprint. They abandoned the use of electricity based on oil shale and substantially reduced the use of thermal energy based on natural gas. Additionally, they have implemented the energy management system ISO 50001 in order to make their energy and resource use more efficient.

The company focuses to all our products will be only produced with renewable energy – wind power, hydropower and solar power. All of these are characterised by two essential aspects – carbon neutrality and renewable resources. A. Le Coq used 100 % renewable electrical energy since 2020.

The electricity consumption of A. Le Coq per year is 10,526 MWh, which is equal to the average annual electricity consumption of 3,500 households. Formerly, they used a combination of oil shale and renewable energy, but they are now replacing it in full with renewable energy. As a result, the carbon footprint of A. Le Coq will be reduced by 7,976 tons per year.

The company made 14 suggestions for energy improvement. 5 from them were realized. Investment plan of the company for the year 2021-2022 should be over 5 mil. € into environmental sustainability including EU subsidiaries 1.218 mil. €.

 The Study Visit followed after experts’ presentations in the small family brewery Únětice. Directors Mrs. and Mr. Tkadlec introduced to participants the production technology during the guided tour.

Experts from Estonia recommended the possibilities of new RES installation in the brewery Únětice during the guided tour. Estonian experts, together with local stakeholder group discussed future PV installation, subsidy possibilities and how to improve the numbers of applications for subsidy in the region Czech Republic with directors of the Únětice brewery. 

Brewery Únětice was started in the year 1710. Production of the brewery is now at about 10.000 hl per year. Directors started the new energy efficient programmes in the year 2017. The aim of the project is reducing the overall energy consumption of the building and the cost of electricity consumption. The project was supported by the European Union from the ERDF.