Swedish Beer Brand Looks To Repurpose Bread Crumbs Into Beer

by Rudy Sanchez on 09/08/2020 | 3 Minute Read

It wasn’t long after humans learned to grow grains that we began to manipulate how to process them into food because dry seeds and beans aren’t really that palatable. Fermentation was one of the early ways civilizations turned cereals and legumes into things like bread and beer, using wild yeasts in the air. Though those ancient people didn’t fully understand how or what fermentation is, they knew it made tasty food and drinks.

Few modern brewers use bread as part of their beer mash, but one brand is returning to that ancient technique to reduce food waste. Crumbs isn’t a brewery but rather a “beer maker” and, more importantly, a firm aiming to fundamentally change how bread gets produced so that less of it gets wasted and more folks get fed.

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While they don’t make beer themselves, Crumbs collaborates with breweries to repurpose bread that would otherwise be discarded and wasted. As such, the branding for Crumbs is unlike the run of the mill beer branding we see, but, like bread, it's a natural fit within the beer world.

“We are not a brewery," said Matt Squire, co-founder of Crumbs. "With that in mind, it was a little different from most branding projects in that we were designing an identity that represented a concept, rather than a physical product, even though, at the end of the day, it was a beer we were producing."

“This led us to the decision of using the label design to send a clear message," Matt says. "We almost went over the top, by choice, on the ’bread’ theme. Wherever you look on the label, you get reminded that this is a beer made from bread. From the name itself to the type of beer, the text on the top of the label that read ’Together against bread waste, one crumb at a time.' And then, of course, on the side of the label, we speak of the problems that we face today."

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The beer label takes a chimeric approach; the logo is a bread loaf on one side with a single hop on the other and a stalk of wheat that combines the two. The label's background features a solid color marked with tiny dots, speaking to the effervescent nature of beer, as well as the air pockets formed in bread as it rises. A light brown reminiscent of baked bread occupies half the label, and the rounded shapes of the typefaces used convey a feeling of familiarity and friendliness.

The first beer from Crumbs, a collaboration with Värmdö brewery, is Loafy Lager, and nearly 30% of the fresh grain supposed gets replaced with upcycled bread. Also available as alcohol-free, the beer is light and refreshing with hints of citrus and bread.

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Editorial photograph

Loafy Lager is Crumbs’ first collaboration, but they're looking forward to future partnerships, especially as we near the holiday season.

“At the moment, we have Loafy Lager, but in the very near future, we will hopefully have other breweries producing all sorts of bread-based beer," he says. 

"With Christmas on its way, we can’t wait to see what beer could be produced with some of the amazing Christmas bread we have over here.”

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