Bottle maker shows zero-waste manufacturing good for economy and the environment
Liberty Bottleworks (Liberty) set out to build a zero-waste manufacturing facility in Washington State to produce a reusable water bottle made from 100 percent recycled aluminum. They recognized that retailers in the U.S. wanted a “made in America” product. Retailers were looking to save on shipping costs and delays related to importing water bottles. Buying local also reduced the environmental costs related to transporting those goods long distances.
They built their factory in Union Gap, Washington, using domestically produced machinery, and shipped their first delivery to REI, Inc., on December 31, 2010.
Achieving Zero Waste Goal
Tim Andis, President/CEO of Liberty Bottleworks,
accepts the national Most Valuable Pollution
Prevention (MVP2) award for sustainable manu-
facturing and pollution prevention from Jeffrey
Burke, Executive Director of NPPR.
Liberty Bottleworks is committed to sustainable and “green” manufacturing practices. Their facility uses highly efficient motors and water-based inks (cured with ultraviolet light). Liberty’s unique powder coat is cured with infrared thermal technology that increases efficiency and saves energy. They clean the manufacturing waste water and reuse it four times, then filter it before finally discharging it from the factory. This efficient use of water avoids polluting local water resources. Liberty bottles are made of recycled aluminum, contain no volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and are 100 percent recyclable.
The bottles are decorated with high-resolution textural art that you can feel as well as see. The insides are powder coated without use of phthalates or bisphenol A (BPA) in a closed-loop process, in keeping with the company’s zero-waste philosophy. The infrared lamps that cure the powder are 800 percent more efficient than conventional curing ovens.
Liberty has delivered more than a half million bottles to retailers since 2010. This translates into recycling more than 62,000 pounds of aluminum. In addition, using an aluminum bottle provides customers an alternative to plastic bottles that may end up in a landfill.
Promoting Locally Made and Sustainability
Liberty provides the only American-made metal bottles in the marketplace. So, they are the first housewares product that Whole Foods Market NW has promoted as “locally made.”
Each year the facility provides tours to schools to highlight their sustainable manufacturing processes. Liberty also worked closely with Reverb, a nonprofit organization that educates and promotes sustainable and environmental practices to music fans, festivals, concerts, and events. Reverb has reached more than 13.5 million fans, “greened” over 141 tours totaling more than 2,700 single events, and is involved with more than 2,900 organizations. Because of this shared environmental commitment, Reverb routinely uses Liberty as their preferred water bottle supplier to convey the message of sustainability.
Earning National Award
Liberty Bottleworks was awarded the 2013 Most Valuable Pollution Prevention (MVP2) award for their work on sustainable manufacturing and pollution prevention. Liberty is one of ten projects honored this year by the National Pollution Prevention Roundtable at an annual ceremony in Washington, D.C. Tim Andis, President/CEO, received the award on behalf of Liberty Bottleworks for their sustainable manufacturing practices in producing the only American-made drinking bottle made from recycled aluminum.
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