BeerSustLab

BeerSustLab

Background

The problem we are addressing are the multiple sustainability challenges related to the craft beer production processes in Scania (Sw. Skåne), Sweden.  The labs will concentrate directly on all HLPF themes through an increased understanding of the socio-ecological impacts involved in the brewing, distribution, and the consumption of craft beer. Furthermore, the craft beer movement is made up of many “frontrunners” in the food & beverage sector. Therefore, they are more open for the creation and adoption of a new generation of principles that move past traditional norms in the industry and target the multiple and interacting SDGs.

Describe the co-design process and the intended participants. What sectors or groups do they represent and why are they invited?

The lab co-design process has begun recently through the work of the applicant and one prominent brewer in the region. He will take the initiative to assemble a requisite group of craft brewers and ingredient suppliers (e.g., hop growers, malters) from the region. The applicant has the responsibility for increasing the diversity of the group by inviting actors from the numerous beer consumer’s groups located in Scania. He also will contact with the director of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at Systembolaget, the Swedish liquor monopoly, who has already expressed interest to participate in lab activities. All the actors listed about are deemed important to the craft beer production and consumption chain.

 

Describe the facilitation of the process.

We propose two participatory lab events throughout the spring 2017. The initial event will concentrate on discussing on the interpretations of sustainability and the respective priorities among the different actors. It will be carried out in the form of an innovative sustainability “speakeasy,” which is a method developed and used by the applicant for the Master’s program in sustainability science. The outcome of the session will be a list of priority areas that can be used as a basis for a comprehensive set of sustainability “principles” for craft beer in Scania.

Based on the outcomes of the first event, the second event later in the spring will be used to narrow down and agree upon the more specific language of the individual principles by the different actors. Additional aspects on how to “operationalize” the principles will also be discussed during this event.

The applicant has experience with facilitation processes and also teaches topics of participatory methods and transformational sustainability science at the Master’s and PhD levels.The role of the facilitator in both events will be to “nudge” actors’ perceptions beyond conventional interpretations of sustainability that include only energy and water use efficiency measures, to include a broader set of priorities that can be help to (modestly) move society closer to the SDGs. A number of graduate students in the LUMES graduate program have also agreed to help out with lab activities for both events.

What are the potential innovations/prototypes and impact of these?

The innovation will not be in the form of a more sustainable “widget.” Instead, we are promoting the idea of a set of diverse and targeted sustainability principles in the form of a distinct label for Scanian craft beer. The principles will set the basis for ongoing sustainability improvements by the respective actors (significantly brewers & ingredient suppliers).

The intention is that the principles are not only concentrate on conventional environmental sustainability parameters, but also include an innovative constellation of social-economic parameters, including new forms of community engagement, brewery ownership structures, etc. Furthermore, we are not proposing a new organic certification system, most brewers and ingredient suppliers already produce products under these standards (e.g., Krav, EU).

Institution/Organization
Centre for Sustainability Studies, LUCSUS, Lund University
Place
Centre for Sustainability Studies at Lund University (Wrangel building)