A new, sustainable way to drink beer has arrived. Located just more than an hour south of Ottawa, Mallorytown’s ArBru Brewery is the first in Canada and possibly the world.

This unique brewery is 100-per-cent reliant on the power of the sun.

Arbru’s commitment to the environment extends beyond its use of solar panels. For every litre of beer it sells, the company plants a tree with Eden Reforestation Projects, which is planting trees in Peru at present.

Arbru is a play on arbre the French word for tree as a way to highlight the company’s sustainable business practices. Capital Current visited the brewery and this is what we found.

Arbru is at 71 Quabbin Rd. in Mallorytown. The brewery opened to the public on July 30. Committed to a sustainable business plan, the brewery says it has made it a core principle to help the environment and the community. [Photo © Lauren Kerans]
Owner and brew master Phil Audet, who earned a degree in sustainable energy engineering, was the mastermind behind the project. He says that 32 solar panels offer more than enough energy (on a sunny day) to run keep the brewery. A few cloudy fall days in a row can cause some alarm, but so far there have been no problems keeping the suds flowing. [Photo © Lauren Kerans]
The energy gathered by the solar panels outside is stored in six lithium batteries. Each battery holds about 30 hours of energy. During hot summer days, the batteries would be fully charge by 10 a.m. Audet keeps an eye on everything through an app, PV Pro, to ensure sufficient levels of energy. Once the energy is inside the building, the brewery is connected to an electrical panel similar to what would be found in any home. [Photo © Lauren Kerans]
Stacie Stephenson, operations manager at Arbru, says the refrigerator, or cold room, uses the most energy. However, Arbru plans to use a fan this winter to blow cold air from outside into the fridge to limit energy use. Additional energy can also be obtained from the sun reflecting off the snow, as the solar panels are double-sided. The crew at Arbru seem confident as they head into their first winter in business. [Photo © Lauren Kerans]
The environment is not the only thing that Arbru would like to support. The brewery plans to help out the small community of Mallorytown as much as it can. Purchasing goods from local farmers and small businesses, or opening its doors when the community is out of power are a few ways Arbru plans to help. [Photo © Lauren Kerans]