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Havana Club outlines eco-friendly initiatives

Cuban rum Havana Club has pledged to cut its carbon footprint through a number of initiatives, including scaling up its by-product recycling programme.

Havana Club Distillery
The distillery in Cuba: the brand plans to cut its carbon footprint

After a ‘successful’ pilot phase of its vinasses project, which saw the rum brand repurpose its sugarcane by-products to deliver 1,000 trucks of vinasses to neighbouring communities, Havana Club is now upscaling the scheme.

Since 2022, when the Pernod Ricard-owned brand committed to cutting its distillery waste products, Havana Club has provided free vinasses to more than 2,000 farmers who work in the fields surrounding its San José distillery.

Havana Club will also reduce the weight of its glass bottles across its core portfolio, which it believes will save 2,200 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

Havana Club Original – Añejo 3 Años, Havana Club 7 Años, and Havana Club Añejo Especial will all feature a thinner glass repartition in the bottle mould, reducing the weight by up to 16%.

The distillery will also eliminate the use of fossil fuels to power its operations.

To achieve this, the brand will install 2,280 units of solar panels, which will begin generating 45% of the distillery’s on-site electricity alongside the introduction of a fleet of electric vehicles for employees.

More solar panels will gradually be installed across the site throughout the year, generating 100% of the distillery’s daylight electricity needs by 2024.

The long-term aim is to generate surplus energy, saving 1,800 tons of CO2 every year.

In addition, the brand is committing to redistribute excess energy to local communities free of charge to support Cubans nationwide amid the island’s energy crisis.

Marie Benech, the rum brand’s communications, public affairs and CSR [corporate social responsibility] director, said: “Sustainability has always been part of Havana Club’s DNA and a circular economy is integral to the Cuban way of life.

“With the climate crisis as critical as ever, Havana Club is committed to reducing its environmental impact across the entire supply chain, from how we bottle our rum to how we power our distillery.”

The Spirits Business recently delved into the rum category and picked three brands to keep an eye on in 2023.

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