Skip to main content
Environmental Management Assistance Program

Craft Breweries

Craft breweries is a fast growing industry sector in the United States and Pennsylvania. One key to their sustainability and success is learning how to operate them in a way that will save money while reducing their environmental footprint.


Sustainability in Craft Breweries

For startup craft breweries and existing small breweries focusing on sustainability & environmental issues is not only good for the planet and natural resources, but it creates a bond and goodwill with your customer base. 

But perhaps even more importantly, operating an efficient and environmentally sound brewery means less waste, less overhead, and more money back in your pocket to make beer, reinvest in equipment upgrades, and be more profitable. 

Air Quality

Until breweries reach a certain size there are not a whole lot of air quality issues that may require a Pennsylvania DEP air quality permit.  But there may be odor issues that may bother some neighbors (yes, not everyone may like the smell of wort or hops) and grain milling can create some indoor airborne particulate matter issues for your employees. 


Have you reached out to a local Pennsylvania farmer to help take a whole lot of spent grain off of your hands?  Have you considered limiting or reducing waste from product packaging, spent hops, trub, and other residual wastes?  Remember, wasted resources are a drain to your bottom line.


Most startup breweries in Pennsylvania have issues of industrial wastewater and where that wastewater will end up going to.  Reaching out to the local Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW) is a smart first move when opening a brewery to understand local requirements and regulations. 

Thinking of discharging to a backyard septic system?  Think again. Most, if not all, local townships will not allow this.

Jeremy Hancher is the EMAP Program Manager located at the Widener University SBDC.  He holds over 15 years of experience in environmental compliance, environmental policy, and program management.  He is proud to be the team lead of the award-winning EMAP program which provides free and confidential environmental assistance to the Pennsylvania small business community in fulfillment of the requirements of the Pennsylvania Air Pollution Control Act and Section 507 of the federal Clean Air Act.
In 2015, Jeremy was part of the team effort when EMAP was recognized by US EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy for Outstanding Accomplishments by a State Small Business Environmental Assistance Provider in Providing Technical Environmental Assistance to the Small Business Community. Jeremy holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and a certificate from the Wharton School.