These Edible Beer Rings Keep Marine Animals Safe From Harm

Americans drink 6.3 billion gallons of beer – half of which is sold in cans. But did you know that the majority of the plastic six-pack rings that package the cans end up in the ocean and kill more than 1 million birds and 100,000 marine animals every year?

A small brewery in the United States is hoping to change that and make a positive impact on ocean conservation. Saltwater Brewery out of Florida developed a biodegradable, edible packaging that essentially becomes fish food if it ends up as litter. The edible six-pack rings are made from left over brewing products – wheat and barley and produced with 3D printer technology. The cardboard-like material is safe for marine animals to eat. In fact, all animals can eat it without ill effect.


Photo credit: Saltwater Brewery

That’s extremely important because many people believe that cutting up the plastic rings is enough to prevent harming animals. It does help stop animals from getting caught and hurt like Peanut the turtle did. However, many birds and turtles still eat the plastic, with disastrous results.

Peanut the turtle

Peanut the turtle. Photo credit: Missouri Department of Conservation

Saltwater Brewery’s solution is believed to be the world’s first fully edible and biodegradable six-pack ring solution that’s still strong enough to carry the weight of six beer cans.

Needless to say, the initial launch of their product was a huge hit with consumers. You only have to see photos and read about the effects that plastics are having on our oceans to stand fully behind this solution.

The brewery now has ambitions to create production facilities for the eco-friendly packaging that can produce enough for all their beer production. They are also getting interest from other brewery companies. How great is that?

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