Brewery transforms itself to lower emissions, attract customers, and inspire others.
The Mussel Inn is a popular cafe, brewery and music venue in Golden Bay. Ever since it opened, in 1992, owners Jane and Andrew Dixon have done things differently. Bit by bit, they’ve transformed their business. The Mussel Inn is now the first carbon-positive brewery in New Zealand.
They brew their beer and cider on site. They grow some of their own produce, including vegetables, apples and hops, and they source locally. They make their own recyclable plastic bottles. They’ve also replaced their diesel runaround vehicle with an electric Nissan Leaf. These actions have significantly reduced emissions.
The Mussel Inn buildings and furniture are made from locally milled timber and recycled materials. Their water is heated by solar power. They use water, apple, and grain waste from the brewery to irrigate and fertilise the orchard. And they shred old cardboard packaging for their composting toilets. Any emissions they do make, they offset by 120%.
“Reducing our emissions has been good for business,” says Jane. “The news that we’ve chosen to be carbon positive was really well received by our customers. We hope it will inspire other businesses to take climate action.”