Press release

Heineken paying £160,000 over pollution incident

The Environment Agency has accepted an enforcement undertaking from a major brewer following a pollution incident on a Herefordshire Brook.


The Environment Agency has accepted an offer of £160,000 for an enforcement undertaking from brewer Heineken UK following a pollution incident at their cider factory in Hereford, which saw several thousand fish killed.

Heineken have also paid more than £12,000 to cover the Environment Agency’s legal costs.

The incident, at their Bulmer’s cider plant in August 2014, was caused when a container of ammonia-contaminated water was emptied to a surface water drain which connected to the Widemarsh Brook.

At the time it was estimated that between 2,000 and 3,000 fish were killed including bullhead, minnows, juvenile chub & dace.

Environment Agency spokesperson Dave Throup said:

It’s very unfortunate that a significant pollution of one of Hereford’s main watercourses happened as a result of Heineken’s actions.

However, we are pleased that the company is planning to make a positive contribution to the county’s environment by offering this enforcement undertaking.

As a result of the enforcement undertaking, £150,000 will go the Wye & Usk foundation and £10,000 to Yazor Widemarsh & Eign Brook restoration project.

Published 3 February 2017