BrewDog will trade used cans for equity as part of sustainability manifesto

Craft beer brand also unveils a visual revamp and extension to the open-sourcing of its production methods.

BrewDog will give people the chance to own a share of the business if they trade in 50 empty beer cans as part of a six-point plan the craft beer giant said was about charting "a new course for business as it balances profit with people and planet".

The move, dubbed "Cans for equity", is the latest way for consumers to join BrewDog’s long-running "Equity for punks" scheme, which over the past decade has raised almost £75m from 132,000 investors. Questions have been raised over the true value of the shares, however.

It comes alongside five other actions intended to tackle the negative environmental impact of beer production:

  • "Indie trash cans": BrewDog is pledging to "upcycle" old beer cans from any brand by refilling them with its own beer
  • "Once beer vodka": beer that does not meet its quality standards will be distilled into vodka instead of wasted. Vodka, along with other spirits including gin and whisk(e)y, is typically distilled from a mixture that is essentially beer, but without the use of hops 
  • "DIY dog": the company said it would "unveil a revolution" in responsible brewing at home, encouraging as many people as possible to brew their own beer with its brewkits, helping cut down on transport miles
  • "BrewDog freehouse": BrewDog has publicly shared the recipes for its entire back catalogue of beers since 2016 – it will now add all of its beer knowledge to this
  • "Tomorrow fund": it will invest £1m a year in research and initiatives to help the brewing industry have a positive impact on the world.

The manifesto, "BrewDog Tomorrow", comes alongside the latest visual revamp for the brand, which uses a large shield shape on its cans and bottles with a range of colour schemes and patterns.

BrewDog co-founder James Watt said: "It’s been a crazy journey so far. We’ve made it here by shaking up brewing and crafting a community owned business that is 100% powered by people. This marks a new dawn, welcome to the new BrewDog."

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