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Brewery overcomes CO2 shortage problems changing to temporary N2 generation, saving money and keeping business continuity

October 14, 2020

In Massachusetts, a brewing company reached out to Atlas Copco Rental in August; they were looking for a quote on our Nitrogen generation unit. Our Area Sales Manager, Ben Kruger, worked with the customer on the details to solve their pain points, in which he required 60 scfm of 99% pure Nitrogen flow. The customer was looking to substitute their CO2 in the beer production due to a shortage in the supply of CO2. 

CO2 is a byproduct of ethanol, and with fewer people driving during the COVID 19 pandemic, ethanol was being produced at a lower rate resulting in less CO2 being made.

After a couple of weeks, Ben reached back out to the brewery to see how the decision process was going. They stated that they were unsure due to the cost of our equipment. Ben asked them if they knew how much the brewery was looking to spend? They were unsure so, Ben asked if he knew how much of the CO2 use they were looking to replace. They stated they wanted to replace about 20-25% of their CO2 usage. The brewery used about 300,000 units of CO2 per month, resulting in 75,000 units needing to be replaced, this equaled out to almost $15,000 a month. With this information, Ben worked out within the ACR team to create a proposal that would be in line with the brewery's current expenses. Atlas Copco Rental had a PO 24 hours later.

After six weeks on-site, Ben visited the brewery with District Manager, Jowell Olaivar, and got more information on precisely what we are helping with. The brewery uses CO2 to purge oxygen out of their Beer and Seltzer making process. This process results in an end product that contains 15-25 PPB (Parts Per Billion) of oxygen.

Upon installing the nitrogen and ongoing testing, the customer found that nitrogen brings their oxygen level to > 100 PPB. However, once they purge their batch with CO2, they can still achieve a level of 15-25 PPB of oxygen.  The brewery also discovered that they were able to use 30-50% less CO2 due to the nitrogen's functionality.  This could result in a cost savings of almost a million dollars by the end of 12 months. If the calculations hold up in continued testing, the customer will make this process a permanent part of their brewing process.

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At Atlas Copco, we have been turning industrial ideas into business-critical benefits since 1873. By listening to our customers and knowing their needs, we deliver value and innovate with the future in mind. 

Great ideas reinforce sustainable development. At Atlas Copco Specialty Rental, we team up with our customers to set up state-of-the-art temporary air, flow, steam and nitrogen solutions. Our passionate experts have extensive application and equipment knowledge. We understand our customers' needs and can provide a total solution for any industry, no matter if it is for emergencies or planned projects. We are a division of the Power Technique business area, headquartered in Boom, Belgium and offer specialty rental solutions under several brands around the globe.