Beam Suntory, a global manufacturer of premium spirits, has announced its plans to invest over $400 million to expand production at its Booker Noe distillery in Boston, KY, which produces the company’s flagship product, Jim Beam. The expansion is expected to increase capacity by 50 per cent and will be based on energy supplied through the use of anaerobic digestors that will produce renewable natural gas to power the facility. As a result of this investment, the distillery’s greenhouse gas emissions will reduce by 50 per cent.
For the execution of the project, Beam Suntory has partnered with 3 Rivers Energy Partners to build a facility across the street to convert spent stillage into biogas which will be treated to renewable natural gas standards and piped directly back to the Booker Noe facility. In an endeavour to support sustainable and regenerative agricultural practices, the digestors will also produce a high-quality, low-cost fertiliser, which will be made available to local farmers.
The project is expected to be completed in 2024, following which the Booker Noe distillery will be 65 per cent powered by renewable natural gas, and the remaining by fossil-based natural gas. The project allows the distillery to invest in high-efficiency gas boilers which will utilise maximum renewable natural gas and in the process facilitate the beneficial reuse of more than 100,000 metric tons of high-purity carbon dioxide annually.