Tennessee Sustainable Spirits Resources

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Tennessee is home to world class whiskey, wine, beer, and other fine spirits. The craft spirit producer’s connection to people, land, and resources is a relationship in which sustainability plays a vital role. The Tennessee Sustainable Spirits (TNSS) program is a voluntary recognition and technical assistance initiative administered by TDEC’s Office of Sustainable Practices (OSP) which seeks to reduce operational costs and environmental impacts for wineries and wine growers, breweries, and distilleries as well as serve as a gateway to sustainability education through popular brands. The new voluntary program assists wineries and wine growers, breweries, and distilleries in improving operational sustainability by promoting best practices, providing technical assistance, and developing relationships.

This webpage houses resources for the craft spirit industry regarding environmental sustainability. You will find tips and tools, as well as webinars and events to become better environmental stewards while also reducing your bottom line.

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August 1, 2023 || Sourcing Ingredients Locally

  • Iowa Green Brewing Certification – They work directly with Iowa’s breweries to minimize their environmental impact by providing technical assistance and guidance in four key areas: Environmental Planning, Energy Efficiency, Water Quality and Conservation, and  Solid Waste Diversion & Disposal.
  • Colorado Sustainable Breweries Assistance Program - They offer free environmental assessments to raise awareness on the environmental impacts of brewing beer. They also provide brewers with pollution prevention strategies.
  • Kentucky Sustainable Spirits - The Division of Compliance Assistance, in collaboration with the Kentucky Distillers Association, have created the Sustainable Spirits Initiative to bring members of the industry together to discuss and share their experiences about current environmental issues and aspire to shape future opportunities for this sector.
  • California Wines
    • Sustainable Winegrowing - Sustainable winegrowing practices protect our soil, air and water – elements that breathe life, and ultimately flavor, into our grapes and wines. Being good stewards of the land and good neighbors are principles our wineries and vineyards live by each and every day. Adopting environmentally and socially responsible practices and making them an integral part of how we do business is our way of ensuring the health of our land, our communities and our industry for generations to come.
    • Sustainable Practices – Sustainable practices in the vineyard, the winery, and the community.
    • Green Programs - California wine community has made a strong commitment to sustainability and transparency, as evidenced through the self-assessment and certification programs that have emerged in the last decade.
  • North Carolina’s Green Breweries and Distilleries – North Carolina’s Division of Environmental Assistance’s Green Travel Program awards recognition to breweries and distilleries base on three scale system. Level of sustainability is determined through an application that covers waste reduction and recycling, energy management, water efficiency, air quality, transportation, environmental measurement, grounds keeping, housekeeping and clan-up, green purchasing, LEED certification, and certification by other organizations.
  • Virginia’s Environmental Excellence Program – Virginia’s Department of Environmental Quality’s Environmental Excellence Program is a membership program in which any organization can participate in by submitting an application that includes general information, documented culture of sustainability, list of recent accomplishments, and future commitments.
  • Vermont’s Green Brewery Cohort – Overseen by Vermont’s Department of Environmental Conservation, the Green Brewery Cohort is membership program for breweries. Membership is obtained by committing to a minimum of 5% reduction in energy use, join the Vermont Green Business Program, submit metrics on environmental impacts.
  • Smart Steps to Sustainability 2.0 – A step by step approach to greening your small business. This 16 page PDF and spreadsheet will help you organize your vision, determine motivators, and develop your approach to becoming a greener business. This link can help with your environmental impact assessment, long-term objectives, and setting goals.
  • Earthly Labs – This company is focused on creating carbon capture technology that’s available to more companies and people.