Inspired by the Egyptians and motivated to make a positive impact, Franco Dipietro and his collaborators hit a home run: they use unsold bread to brew a delicious beer and in Italy there truly is a lot, every day. To turn an idea into reality, you need an entrepreneurial approach, accurate knowledge of the laws and an organized supply chain. They did it. We can’t wait to find Biova throughout Italy and to appreciate 20 different flavours, one for each region.
Cristina: By volunteering to recover leftover food for the needy, a group of young people experienced the problem of waste firsthand, bread in particular, which, every day, in Italy, amounts to 1,300 tons. Hence the idea of transforming it. We came to Turin to tell their story. Franco, what do you do with the bread?
Franco Dipietro: We recover the unsold bread at the end of the day and turn it into beer, 150kg of bread become 2,500 liters of craft beer. This is our way of giving new value to something that would otherwise be waste.
Cristina: How do you collect it?
Franco Dipietro: We’ve developed our own protocol: we recover it at the end of the day before it legally becomes waste. We take it to centers built specifically to treat it, where we dry it, grind it and turn it into a new ingredient. In this case, to replace barley malt to make new beer. Not only are we recovering something unsold, we’re saving on the use of a raw material, up to 30% and even up to 50% with new recipes that we’re developing.
Cristina: Do you think you can produce all over Italy?
Franco Dipietro: It is a possible supply chain, we’ve studied a model that allows us to replicate it throughout Italy. We always try to have our centers near existing breweries, so only our recipes travel. This way we can limit emissions and related costs.
Cristina: Do you always ferment locally?
Franco Dipietro: Exactly, in the past few years breweries have increased throughout Italy, and they also work for third parties. So we can go “cook” the bread in various places.
Cristina: So each region will have its own flavor…
Franco Dipietro: It’s very interesting because clearly the bread gives a characteristic taste to the beer, therefore according to the regionality of the bread, the taste of the beer changes. This is also a lot of fun to try.
Cristina: This was a lifestyle change for you.
Franco Dipietro: Absolutely, we realized that bread is a very difficult problem to manage. It costs very little and the surplus is too abundant to be redistributed. In Italy, almost two whole soccer fields of bread are wasted every day, so reducing food waste is definitely a way to guarantee a more sustainable future.
Cristina: This circular economy project fulfills SDGs 12 and 13. Let’s celebrate this beautiful solution to reduce food waste with a nice toast! Occhio al futuro
On air June 20, 2020