Unleashing The Power Of Supply Chain Management For A Sustainable Pint


The best beer requires the best barley—and that means working with those in our supply chain. We know that the agricultural operations we source from make up some of the largest impacts on our water footprint. As such, it is essential that we partner with our farmers to embed water management practices in their operations to ensure a continuous sustainable process that reduces the global footprint on our water supply.

Water is critical to MillerCoors at every point in our value chain — from barley and hops fields to our bottling lines. We have a long history of prioritizing water stewardship beyond our own operations to ensure that everyone has access to high-quality water for years to come. To make a significant dent in our overall water usage, we knew we needed to take on the challenge of reducing our resource intensity upstream in the supply chain.

Barley is the primary ingredient in our beers and makes up around 90 percent of all crops we source in our brewing process. While other commodity and specialty crops have greatly benefited from methods and technologies that are able to track on-farm operational metrics, the barley community is still in the early stages of adoption of these processes. That’s why we developed the “Better Barley, Better Beer” program to focus significant energy and resources on this area.

Through this program, we test new farming techniques and sustainability practices that can be scaled across every one of our U.S. barley growing regions and reduce the impact on our water footprint dramatically. It includes the following projects

  1. Showcase Barley Valley in Silver Creek, Idaho;
  2. Showcase Barley Farm in San Luis Valley, Colorado;
  3. Malt Barley Production Field Study; and
  4. New barley variety BC100.

Collectively, our projects have made positive strides to improve our resource usage while meeting top quality standards of barley production. Together with our Grower Direct digital platform, which collects the data of agricultural best management practices at the field level, our “Better Barley, Better Beer” program allows for agriculture sustainability best practices to be cultivated and shared among our growers.

Lastly, our “Sustainability Incentives” program, which was introduced in 2018, will allow us to reward growers who align with our sustainability principles and make the decision to conserve, improve, and reduce water use on their farms. We’ve seen 100% participation from our partners for the past two years on our Grower Direct Portal, which is already helping us identify opportunities for improvement. In the first year of our “Sustainability Incentives” program, we allocated over $2 million (equivalent to $.20 more per bushel/weight) to growers who opt to prioritize sustainability on their farms.

Ultimately, the various projects under our “Better Barley, Better Beer” program will move Molson Coors closer to reaching our 2025 goal of improving water-use efficiency of our agricultural supply chain and malting operations by 10%. By 2025, we also aim to source 100% of our barley and hops from sustainable suppliers in our key growing regions. Through this comprehensive program, we will continue to share our findings with our grower community and key stakeholders to look for ways to improve. We look forward to continuing to explore various techniques and management practices so that we can further expand our impact and help reduce our water footprint in our barley growing communities.


MillerCoors is dedicated to working with suppliers who are as diverse astheir consumers. They give minority and women-owned business enterprises (MWBEs) an opportunity to compete with other suppliers in the marketplace. As a member of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), MillerCoors supports local, regional and national MWBE councils. MillerCoors is committed to supplier diversity, and is focused on increasing both participation and spend with MWBE suppliers.