This UK company is brewing beer using leftover bread
Toast Ale, a British craft beer company, has started something novel by deciding to use wasted food. Using wasted bread, the company, through its own brewery, and in collaboration with local pubs and micro-breweries, is producing beer at a commercial scale. Considering the scale of global food wastage, it's trying to promote recycling by spreading the message of brewing with leftover bread.
Ensuring surplus produced bread doesn't get wasted
"There is so much bread being wasted that we don't need to take it away from people who could eat it, and our priority is to get it to people," said Toast Ale's chief brand and finance officer, Louisa Ziane.
How Toast Ale uses leftover bread to brew beer
Around one-third of the food produced in the world is wasted. In the UK, 44% of bread is wasted. So, Toast Ale started taking surplus bread from bakers and sandwich makers, and replaced a third of the barley which would otherwise have been required to brew. The leftover bread provides some of the sugars which turn into alcohol while brewing, thus reducing barley requirements.
How bread is used along with barley to brew beer
As long as leftover bread with neutral flavors - wheats, whites, sourdoughs, etc. - are used, replacing some of the malted barley with bread doesn't produce significant or perceptible changes in the flavor. During brewing, the leftover bread is broken into chunks and thrown into hot water along with barley to produce the "mash". Bread crusts and malted barley solids are strained before fermentation.
Toast Ale is dedicated to the fight against food wastage
Toast Ale was launched in 2016 and currently sells its commercial produce at grocery stores, pubs, and restaurants. Once the company starts generating profits, it plans to donate 100% of profits to Feedback, a charity organization fighting against food wastage. It has already started donating to Feedback through its local collaborations. Interestingly, both Toast Ale and Feedback share their founder - Tristram Stuart.
Toast Ale already operates in several different countries
Going by Toast Ale's expansion till date, one would assume it to be rather successful. The company has franchised or licensed its brand in Brazil, Iceland, and South Africa. Recently, Toast Ale also expanded to the New York City area where its beers are now sold in grocery shops, bars, and restaurants. Toast Ale's beer recipe is also available online for home-brewers to try.