Circular aluminium plant to provide cans to Guinness and Gordon’s



Beverage alcohol company Diageo has provided funding to a new consortium which will build a UK-based aluminium plant to create a circular economy for aluminium.

The new facility will provide recycled aluminium for over 400 million cans of Guinness and pre-mixed Gordon’s and tonic. Diageo says the plant will use 95% less energy in the production of its aluminium sheet versus traditional prime production methods.

Diageo has announced that it has provided funding to establish the British Aluminium Consortium for Advanced Alloys (BACALL), a collective of industry experts who the company says will create a circular economy for aluminium in the UK.

The BACALL will build the advanced aluminium recycling and manufacturing plant with the aim of establishing a new circular-economy supply chain for aluminium in the UK. Once the plant is up and running, the recycled aluminium will contribute to Diageo’s 10-year sustainability action plan.

We can localise and close the supply chain, providing substantial reductions in carbon emissions.

Diageo says the plant will do this by increasing the use of recycled aluminium, reducing the carbon emissions needed to export and import aluminium sheet, reducing the dependency on raw materials needed to create aluminium and contributing to a reduction in Diageo’s Scope 3 carbon emissions.

Diageo has been working with BACALL since 2021 when it jointly funded a feasibility study with the UK government (via Innovate UK) into whether and how a large-scale circular economy strategy could be adopted across the aluminium sector tailored to the UK.

David Sneddon, non-executive Director of BACALL Aluminium Ltd, commented: “Aluminium is one of the most recyclable materials on the planet – yet the 15 billion plus cans made in the UK rely on an energy-intensive supply chain, that requires aluminium to be brought in and out of the country.

“By sourcing, recycling, manufacturing and supplying aluminium flat rolled sheet in the UK, we can localise and close the supply chain, providing substantial reductions in carbon emissions. This will help create a more sustainable aluminium industry and will secure the future capacity of ultra-low carbon alloys.”

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