empty beer rings

Major Beer Company Begins Using Biodegradable 6-Pack Rings That Feed Fish

There’s no way around it: Our planet has a plastic problem. Nowhere is this more evident than in our lakes and oceans, and no one is suffering from it more than marine animals. With images of turtles, fish, and other animals ensnared in plastic, a Florida beer company decided enough was enough. They created the world’s first biodegradable 6-pack rings. Today, beer companies around the world are using these rings. (1)

Florida Beer Company Invents Biodegradable 6-Pack Rings

In 2016, Saltwater Brewing company in South Florida decided that they could do more to protect the ocean and sea life that they loved so much. They created biodegradable 6-pack rings to replace the traditional plastic ones to prove that, with a little creativity, the plastic problem is solvable. (1)

Advertisement

The biodegradable 6-pack rings are made from some of the byproducts of beer making: wheat and barley. Not only are they 100% biodegradable, but they are actually edible. If they end up in the ocean, they will either become fish food or break down quickly, as if they were never there. (2)

Advertisement

If you’re concerned whether or not these beer holders will keep your six-pack safe, fear not: they are just as strong as their dangerous plastic counterparts. While currently, they are slightly more expensive to produce than the plastic versions, the company says that the more breweries that use them, the cheaper they will become. Eventually, they could be as cheap as the plastic rings. (1)

Advertisement

Read: Worried about Earth’s future? Well, the outlook is worse than even scientists can grasp

Advertisement

Non-Food-Food

Yes, these rings are 100% natural and edible. So much so, in fact, that even you could take a bite out of them. The company maintains, of course, that this is not advisable – they don’t taste very good, and they hold no nutritional value. (3)

Advertisement

They also remind people that this doesn’t mean you should throw them anywhere. The best place for your biodegradable 6-pack rings is in the compost bin. If they do end up where they’re not supposed to be – for example, the landfill or the ocean – they will either break down or be eaten by birds or marine life, causing no pollution and no harm. (3)

Advertisement

This is a brilliant innovation, and ocean conservancy groups are all on-board, including the Loggerhead Marine Life Center. (2)

Advertisement

“One-hundred percent of our post-hatchling patients that enter the hospital here at Loggerhead have plastic in their stomach,” said Katie O’Hara, Conservation Coordinator at Loggerhead Marine Life Center. (2)

These rings will quite literally be life-saving.

Advertisement

The E6PR

Saltwater Brewing company is a small-batch brewing company in South Florida trying to make a difference. However, they know that the more breweries who follow their lead, big and small, the bigger of an impact they will make. (1)

Advertisement

“We hope to influence the big guys,” Chris Goves, Saltwater Brewery’s president, said. “And hopefully inspire them to get on board.” (1)

Well, the team at saltwater got their wish. Eco 6-Pack Ring (E6PR), established in Mexico in 2017, is creating biodegradable 6-pack rings for craft brewers and is partnered with Saltwater Brewing. (3)

In 2019, however, they got in with one of the big guys. Cans of Corona manufactured at the company’s headquarters in Tulum, Mexico, began using the eco-friendly rings. Hopefully, Corona will adopt the biodegradable rings at all of its facilities worldwide. (3)

“The innovation behind our can ring is the redesign of packaging, manufactured with natural fibers which are biodegradable and compostable,” says company president RicardoMulás. “where if discarded properly it will make its way to a compost facility and compost or if incorrectly thrown into the wilderness it will biodegrade.” (3)

Currently, E6PR is partnered with 150 brands from 19 countries on four continents: From Argentina to Canada, Europe to South America, all across the United States, and even all the way down under. (4)

While we certainly have a long way to go in solving the plastic problem in our oceans, innovations like biodegradable 6-pack rings prove that it is possible to build a more sustainable future while still enjoying the things we love, including an ice-cold beer.

Keep Reading: Transparent Solar Panels Will Turn Windows Into Green Energy Collectors

References

  1. Edible Rings On Six-Packs Feed Marine Life If They End Up In The Ocean.” Huffington Post. Elyse Wanshel.
  2. Saltwater Brewery manufactures and sells eco six-pack rings to help protect marine life from plastic.” WP Tv. Michelle Quesada. May 30, 2018.
  3. E6PR Eco Six Pack Rings Are Being Adopted By Craft Breweries.” Forbes. Jeff Kart. May 24, 2019.
  4. E6PRioneers: “Leading The Sustainable Way“. E6PR.
Advertisement