Case Studies

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Food and Beverage

Winnipeg Oven Heat Recovery

  • Aug, 17 2011
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


In 2008, the company committed to replacing its aging Winnipeg fresh bread and rolls facility. The original facility was almost 100 years old and suffered from high costs to modernize the building and equipment. Hydro pricing had been increasing on average 3% per year, and natural gas pricing was increasing 22% over the first 6 months of 2008. Continuing at these cost increases, the plant would find utility costs becoming a significant factor in overall plant profitability. Cost savings for operating the plant could be realized by recovering waste heat for other uses inside the facility, and the capital and operational costs of the installation of a statute regulated steam system could be avoided.


The main stakeholders in this project were upper management, our production staff, central engineering, Air Management Technologies and Manitoba Hydro.


The main goal of the heat recovery system was to negate the need for equipment and infrastructure costs to operate a conventional 50 BHP steam boiler system with its 70% overall gas to heat efficiency, and replace this with a system that would recover waste heat that is effectively 100% efficient. Avoiding the boiler plant at full loading would displace the need to combust over 1.7M BTU/hr of natural gas, avoid 172 lbs/hr of 10% boiler blow down water, and negate a boiler water treatment program that would have required wastewater monitoring and potential treatment. In the spring of 2008, Central Engineering completed a detailed review of the statute requirements of P95-92, The Power Engineers Act, to determine what design options and constraints would be encountered to build a heat recovery system, and compared this to the needs of a conventional steam boiler system. Manitoba Hydro was consulted for interpretation of some clauses of the Act and it was determined that, from a capital standpoint, heat recovery was a lower cost option. MB Hydro expressed interest at this time to support, via incentives, the installation of a heat recovery system depending upon design performance.


Air Management Technologies was contacted in early summer 2008, to provide a proposal for heat recovery to be incorporated in the overall plant design. In consultation with the oven suppliers, AMF and Bake-Tech, and the dough proofing supplier, Bake-Tech, a design was formed based upon a similar installation done two years previously at another Weston’s facility in the USA. Detailed design calculations indicated that the full boiler loading could be avoided, resulting in a potential net savings of 113,178 m3 of natural gas per year, with electrical consumption being held the same for both the heat recovery and conventional boiler options. Usage of potable city water was not needed for the heat recovery system, so boiler blow down issues would be avoided. Once the heat recovery design was completed, Manitoba Hydro was contacted in late summer 2008 to engage their support for the design and the offering of potential incentives.


In the fall of 2008, the main challenges for the system to proceed were to convince upper management that the design would be as reliable as a conventional steam system, and that the cost of ownership would be favorable. The reliability of the design concept was dealt with by consulting the USA facility where the original heat recovery system had been in operation for over 2 years. Topics related to capacity, reliable operational time, system maintenance and complexity for plant staff were discussed during several conference calls, and compared very favorably to a steam system. The resulting positive comments were forwarded to upper management decision makers. Cost of ownership was a comparison of capital outlay, labor costs, chemical costs and water usage costs between the heat recovery and steam systems. While capital outlay was found to be similar, secondary operational costs were found to be avoidable in the case of water and chemicals, or reduced in natural gas consumption.


In the spring of 2009, upon completion of the construction of the new facility, the heat recovery system was put on line. Upon start-up, the cold start loading of both production line proofers was carried by the heat recovery from the rolls line only, validating the main design requirement of displacing the need for a steam boiler. In addition, the commissioning showed that a surplus of heat would be available for other secondary uses in the future, as the bread oven recovery unit was not in use at this time. Data collection presented to Manitoba Hydro during the months of July-August 2009 and during November 2009 showed that the heat recovery actually achieved was equivalent to 60,783 m3 of natural gas per year and 67,093 m3 of natural gas per year respectively. Scaled to the use of a 70% steam system, this gives a savings range of avoided natural gas consumption of 86,832 to 95,847 m3 per year, which is 76% of the designed target. The full potential savings of 113,178 m3 from the design could not be achieved due to the changes in production at the facility. The model required 24 hrs per day continual operations to keep the circulating fluid hot, but plant operations of 20 hrs per day allowed for cool down of the heat recovery fluid. Additionally, we learned that review of statute requirements in tandem with the governing utility would allow for a more complete understanding of design constraints and opportunities.


The business case to drive the heat recovery system resulted from net reductions in required capital and operational costs. The installation of a steam system would have required additional money to construct a separate steam plant building, a water treatment plant for boiler water, a wastewater treatment plant for boiler blow down, and more complex distribution piping. These extra costs were estimated at over $400,000. Operational costs would have been escalated with a steam plant due to chemical treatment programs, additional water use, and stationary engineering requirements. Chemical treatment programs cost on average $5000/yr for our facilities and water use savings would be nominal. Reallocation of stationary engineering salaries towards more technical maintenance staff was the preferred staffing option. Proven gas savings of 86,000 to 95,000 m3 gas per year amounted to a minimum of $27,000/yr in natural gas savings for this installation. Manitoba Hydro supplied a net incentive of $29,000 to the project upon supply of the verified gas usage data. The overall cost of project was $242,000, with year one total savings of $461,000 for operations and capital with ongoing savings of $32,000, excluding repairs and maintenance costs of the avoided steam plant building. The project embedded in the company psyche that heat recovery is economically viable, and would be the method of choice for future replacements or green field installation of systems requiring steam.


Read more about the Winnipeg Facility in the Natural Resources Canada OEE publication.

Website Links


Food and Beverage

Pepe’s Mexican Foods De-Stratification Fan

  • Aug, 17 2011
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


In 2007, a cost effective solution to the dual problem of winter heating and summer cooling was needed at Weston Bakeries’ Pepe’s Mexican Foods facility. The plant was located in a leased property, limiting the options for modifications to the building to deal with heating and cooling issues. In the summer months, the installed HVAC system that serviced employee comfort at the packing zone was suffering from infiltration air from the loading dock area, making the system ineffective on hot days. In the winter, unitary gas fired heaters were used to deal with infiltration air during loading operations, but the installed capacity was insufficient to heat the area during the coldest winter months. Both of these situations led to severe employee discomfort, increased heating and cooling costs and lost productivity. Installation of additional cooling and heating capacity was not an option due to building lease constraints.


The main stakeholders in this project were our production staff, central engineering, Enbridge Gas and Arbon Equipment.


The main goal of the de-stratification fan was to reduce the impact of infiltration air into the plant from the loading dock area. Air temperatures in the packing area and loading dock areas were to be set at a minimum of 18 Celsius in the winter, where at the loading dock doors, routine temperatures would drop to freezing resulting in icing up of the dock leveling plates. Summer cooling was to be accepted based upon reduced wet bulb readings around the wrapping area, where heat stress breaks were to be avoided. The ACGIH values for heat stress adopted by the company allows for a maximum wet bulb temperature of 29.6 Celsius for light duty work.


In the summer of 2007, central engineering did a design options review of each issue in turn. Winter heating options included re-working the loading dock mechanisms to weather seal them against air infiltration, installing additional unitary gas fired heaters, installing high speed roll up doors and strict enforcement of doors closed when not actively loading the trucks. The summer cooling options included, additional HVAC equipment, ceiling drop separation curtains and rotating labor breaks. Each equipment addition would add to the operational cost of the facility, as well as consume available capital.


The Conservation Projects contact at Enbridge Gas was consulted as to options that had not been considered for supplemental heating needs. In discussion, options such as infrared heating and increased insulation value doors were considered. An out-of-the-box option was also put forward in the guise of large diameter fans. These fans had been installed by commercial clients of Enbridge and it was indicated that they were gaining more popular use. These fans were incented via the Gas Saver Program from Enbridge and this gained our interest as a low cost option to deal with our heating needs.


Arbon Equipment was contacted in mid summer 2007, to provide details on large diameter slow rotation fans that are designed to de-stratify large areas. During review of the Revolution Fans offered by Arbon, it was apparent that both heating and cooling issues could be handled. The attached figure from ASHRAE 55 section 5.2.3 tabulates the relationship between air speed and apparent cooling, in effect the “wind chill effect”, and was referenced by Arbon as the reasoning behind the summer benefits of these fans. Enbridge Gas was contacted with our intent to install an Arbon Revolution 24 foot diameter fan in July 2007, and they offered incentives under the Gas Saver Program.


In the fall of 2007, the main challenge for the fan installation to proceed was to convince leadership that the design would be valid and offset a conventional gas heating solution. Validity of the design was supported by numerous successful installations in other facilities in the upper USA and also in Ontario, and was openly endorsed by the conservation contact at Enbridge Gas with a pre installation commitment for incentives. This would limit the funding required by the company to get this first trial fan installed. Fall back upon a conventional gas fired unit heater system was little risk due to immediate availability of gas fired unitary heaters.

Pepe’s Mexican Foods De-Stratification Fan</h3>


In the fall of 2007, a 24 foot diameter Revolution Fan was installed half-way between the loading docks and the packaging area. Upon start up, it was found that the wind chill effect provided significant comfort cooling in the immediate areas of the fan. A secondary effect was realized in that the down draft of air and donut shaped air flow of the fan did act as an air dam between the loading docks and the packaging area. This resulted in the AC air in the immediate packaging areas not being displaced away from the employees. A further effect was to wind chill the loading dock employees from early September heat. Mid winter testing of de-stratification was planned and the results below found that over 10 Celsius temperature rises could be had using the de-stratification fan only, with the added benefit of turning off the four unitary gas fired dock heaters that were in place; each dock heater was approximately 100,000 Btu/hr in capacity.


In January of 2008, two temperature trials verified the de-stratification effects and temperature rise at floor level by using this fan. In one trial, the fan only was used for 24hrs to heat the floor level areas, and in the second test only unitary heaters were used with the fan off and locked out. Temperatures were checked at the loading dock doors and between the packing area and the large fan. The results were normalized against actual outdoor temperatures at the local airport to remove the possibility of a warmer day skewing results. The attached graphs show that with the fan on the temperatures at floor level were increased from 10 Celsius to almost 20 Celsius, and further into the plant, towards the packing areas, the floor temperatures were increased from 14 Celsius to over 25 Celsius.


The business case to drive use of de-stratification resulted from net reductions in capital required and operational costs. The installation of supplementary summer cooling AC and winter unitary gas heaters would have required significant structural roof reinforcement, additional operating utility costs, and special permission from the building owner to do modifications to the structure. The summer AC costs were estimated at $5000 for structural reinforcement and over $15,000 for installation of 15 tons of AC, with the cooling season hydro cost of $3700. Winter heating costs were estimated at $7500 per unit heater added, where it was estimated two units were needed and consuming $5300 of natural gas. Total year one costs of the conventional approach would have been $36,500 with the annual utility bill increased by $9000. Installed, the fan cost $8800, with Enbridge’s Gas Saver program incentive valued at $5600. Utility use of a de-stratification fan is approximately $290 in the cooling year and approximately $400 in the heating year, without the need for natural gas. Total year one costs were $3890, with the annual utility bill increasing by $690. The fan would save the plant over 37,000 kWhrs and 18,000 m3 of natural gas per year.


This trial project proved the validity of using large diameter fans to both provide seasonal heating and cooling effects to our factory floors. Subsequent to this initial installation, fans have been added to three other Ontario Weston factories to off set conventional remediation using the AC and unitary heater solution.



Pepe’s Mexican Foods De-Stratification Fan</h3>

Food and Beverage

Tetra Pak's Tetra Recart Provides Eco-Minded Packaging Alternative to Cans and Jars

  • Jul, 22 2011
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


Tetra Pak changed the face of packaging over 60 years ago when it introduced aseptic (shelf-stable) carton packaging for milk. This innovation was driven by the need for a packaging product that could be transported and stored without refrigeration. Today, Tetra Pak continues to innovate to meet the ever-changing needs of customers, retailers, and the end consumer. Now more than ever before, consumers are seeking more sustainable solutions, including nutritious products that are packaged responsibly.

True to the company’s legacy to develop and manufacture innovative packaging solutions, Tetra Pak has produced a carton that has successfully met the challenge to stock the stagnant canned food aisle with a viable alternative that is lightweight, recyclable and made mainly from a renewable resource.


For Tetra Pak, innovation is about renewing and refreshing as much as it is about creating something new. Tetra Pak first conceptualized a “retortable carton” – which enables filled projects to be sterilized within the package – years ago. At that time, the industry and consumers simply could not envision it.

Today, Tetra Pak is capitalizing on the stagnant canned food aisle with its ground-breaking retortable carton packaging system: Tetra Recart. The Tetra Recart package fulfills the increasing demands of consumers by offering an alternative to cans for entire food categories including vegetables, soups, tomatoes, beans and even pet food.


Tetra Pak’s Tetra Recart provides an innovative and sustainable option for customers, retailers and consumers alike. Tetra Recart differs from traditional carton packages in order to withstand the rigours of the retorting process. It is optimized to work with batch retorting systems, which sterilize the package and its contents simultaneously using steam and hot water under pressure. The product inside is typically heated to more than 130°C during retorting – a temperature required to render the contents commercially sterile and therefore shelf-stable over a determined span of time.

To understand the innovation of Tetra Recart, it is important to acknowledge Tetra Pak’s commitment to unlocking business and environmental value across the entire packaging lifecycle. Tetra Recart is a sustainable alternative to canned food. It is made mainly from paper (66 per cent), a renewable and renewed resource. The shape and weight of a Tetra Recart package makes it exceptionally efficient to transport. Unlike conventional steel cans, Tetra Recart is transported as flat cartons to the filling factory.

As a result, one standard truck with empty Tetra Recart cartons has the carrying capacity of nine standard trucks with empty cans. It also uses one-third the packaging to deliver the same amount of product. In addition to steel cans, Tetra Recart is also a viable alternative to glass jars:

  • For every one million cans, Tetra Recart uses 32 tonnes less packaging, and
  • For every one million jars, Tetra Recart uses 182 tonnes less packaging.

At the end of its life, Tetra Recart enters a new phase that will see it transformed and begin anew. With a 94 per cent national access rate, cartons are recyclable nearly everywhere in Canada. Recycled cartons are often turned into tissue or other useful and valuable paper products, dramatically reducing the carbon footprint of this innovative packaging system. In addition, in 2010, Tetra Pak partnered with a number of corporations and local government organizations to collectively provide $1-million in seed capital to Groupe RCM, a recycling facility in Yamachiche Québec. The facility launched a line that accepts all cartons (including Tetra Recart), as well as plastic shopping bags and cellophane to make a wide variety of plastic products including: flower pots, railway ties, guard rail posts, pallets and plastic lumber.

As a technological pioneer of the packaging industry Tetra Pak has always paid close attention to how society consumes food and beverages, and the behavioural and cultural shifts that reveal opportunities. Tetra Recart embodies the transformation and innovation that Tetra Pak brings to the marketplace to address consumer needs.

Tetra Pak Canada Ltd. was the winner of the 2011 GLOBE Award for Best Green Consumer Product.


Food and Beverage

Frito Lay – Zero Emission Trucks

  • Aug, 31 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


As Canada’s largest snack food manufacturer, Frito Lay Canada (FLC) sells millions of bags of product each year. These bags are transported to thousands of retail customers each day through the company’s extensive direct to store delivery network. To service customers from coast-to-coast, FLC operates one the country’s largest private fleets, which accounts for a significant portion of FLC’s carbon footprint. For many years, the company has been committed to continually upgrading improving its delivery vehicle fleet with new and innovative technologies to support its overall supply chain environmental sustainability goals.


FLC has made great strides in making its delivery fleet more efficient by improving its existing trucks (improvements include anti-idling mechanisms, more efficient cabin heating systems, skylights in the trailers to reduce the need for artificial lighting, etc), introducing new lighter-weight, more efficient Sprinter vehicles, and by optimizing delivery routes to reduce kilometers driven. Due to these efforts, since 2005 FLC has avoided growing its fleet by 250 vehicles and has actually reduced its fleet size by 55 vehicles while sales have grown.

In June 2010, the company announced its latest fleet innovation with the introduction of zero-emission, all-electric trucks into its delivery fleet. These were made possible through a partnership with Transport Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, making FLC the country’s first food manufacturer to introduce fully-electric vehicles into its delivery fleet.

The six electric vehicles are based at FLC’s major distribution centres across the country – three in Brampton (ON), one in Ottawa (ON), one in Surrey (BC) and one in Laval (QC). Each of the six zero-emission electric vehicles has a 60 kilometer per day range, which meets the daily kilometer needs of the majority of the routes from these distribution centres.

The zero-emission electric vehicles were made by Smith Electric Vehicles, the world’s leading manufacturer of electric vehicles. The six electric vehicles are powered by electricity from the grid, offset by renewable energy credits, and at the end of the battery lifespan (3-5 years or longer) they will be returned to Smith Electric for recycling. As the company purchases renewable energy credits to offset the usage of these vehicles, the electric trucks operate with zero on-road carbon emissions. They also produce zero pollutants and particulate emissions, unlike traditional fossil fuel engines.

The fully electric vehicles feature a 120 kW induction motor that produces virtually no engine noise. A 40 kWh battery pack gives the vehicle a 60 km range and regenerative braking charges the battery while the truck decelerates. The top speed of the electric trucks is governed at 80 km/h to help maximize its range, which makes the vehicles suitable for urban delivery routes.

Frito Lay – Zero Emission Trucks</h3>


The new zero-emission electric trucks are now servicing customers in the Brampton, Ottawa, Surrey, and Laval areas. The government, media and public response to these vehicles has been overwhelmingly positive.

Frito Lay Canada will continue its journey to improve its delivery fleet. As electric trucks are not suitable for every area of the country and every route type, the company will continue to work towards a fleet that’s comprised of several types of highly-efficient vehicles that meet its various route needs and driving distances across the country.

Frito Lay – Zero Emission Trucks</h3>

Website Links

• FLC Environmental Sustainability Website

• Soundbite from Marc Guay, FLC President

• Soundbite from Helmi Ansari, FLC Sustainability Leader

• FLC Fleet Case Study


Food and Beverage

Canadian Springs – Hybrid Electric Truck Case Study

  • Mar, 10 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


To lower emissions from delivery trucks.

1. Canadian Springs is Canada’s leading provider of direct delivery 18L bottled water and plumbed in filtration systems for homes and offices nationally. The company wishes to emphasize that it fully supports the highest grade of public tap water infrastructure with free and easy access for all, it simply sees a necessity and desire for an alternative drinking water supply for many reasons. Our drinking water products are valued by our customers for areas where tap water is not easily accessible and also as a cleaner alternative to tap water because tap water contains unwanted chemicals such as chlorine and its bi-products, lead, copper, rust, VOCs and many others.

2. Each Canadian Springs large format returnable refillable bottle is used an average of 55 times and carries 1,000L of water in its lifetime before the bottle and its cap are recycled by the company into other useful products. Complete life cycle analysis of 18L water bottles reveals that they have a surprisingly low carbon footprint approximately equal to that of plumbed in tap water filtration systems for equal volumes of water used (this includes all energy inputs of bottle manufacturing, filling, delivering and returning bottles, washing, refilling and recycling for the life of the bottle). Both 18L bottles and tap water filtration systems have a total carbon footprint approximately five times that of tap water, depending on the region of the country. This is in stark contrast to single use bottled water which has a carbon footprint from 30 to 150 times (or more) than that of tap water. A recent independent Oregon Department of Environment study roughly confirms these numbers.

3. Downtown Vancouver trucks delivering Canadian Springs 18L bottles or tap water filters only travel an average of 15,000 km per year, but do 15,000 deliveries per year of an average of 5 bottles or 3 filters per delivery.

4. Having said this, 83% of all company emissions are due to its trucking activities. Addressing truck emissions would therefore have the greatest impact in achieving the company’s goal of becoming the cleanest beverage company in the world. Using large format returnable refillable bottles and supplying filtration systems are already relatively low impact ways of supplying clean drinking water, but addressing truck emissions would further lower that impact.

5. Canadian Springs employs the three Rs in everything it does: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. We want customers to carry a sport bottle with spring or filtered water rather than purchasing single use bottled water. Get in the mindset of using refillables for all your beverages while you’re at it.

Canadian Springs – Hybrid Electric Truck Case Study</h3>


Hybrid electric Class 7 trucks.

1. All fuel efficient and exhaust after treatment products were considered as possible candidates for reducing truck emissions. Some options appeared to have better potential than others, but all options were limited to those that can be applied to the duty cycle and type of truck Canadian Springs uses; Class 7 beverage body delivery trucks in urban environments. For all-around benefit and ease of use, it was settled that the newly available hybrid electric trucks for Class 7s was the best option.

2. After joining the Vancouver based Electric Vehicles Buyers Group in 2008, the company learned of other fleets that wanted to get greener trucks but needed help in doing so. As opposed to the USA, there is no standard Canadian program in place for fleets to access grants or subsidies for purchasing lower emission vehicles.

3. With the help of the Fraser Basin Council, a total of eight fleets made a collective one time application for funding to help purchase the hybrids because they are significantly more expensive (the incremental cost is 50% more than a standard vehicle). The applications were successful and the Fraser Basin Council got funding for 50% of the incremental cost of the hybrid platform from the BC Ministry of Environment. Thank you Fraser Basin Council.


Understanding route duty cycles is key to maximizing savings.

1. After testing the new hybrids on various routes, it soon became apparent that fuel savings (and therefore emissions) are dependent on route terrain and duty cycles.

2. Results show maximum savings with urban stop and start routes. Some routes have generated up to 45% fuel reductions compared to the same route using regular trucks. Other routes with fewer stops and more highway travel generate fuel savings of only 5%. All routes do generate fuel savings using hybrids.

3. Payback: with seven year full maintenance leases the payback for using hybrids is unclear for all routes but is becoming increasingly clear for high density urban routes. Average fuel savings of approximately 30-40% on the high density routes will cover the increased cost of purchasing the hybrids. These trucks will both save the company money and reduce fuel use and emissions significantly.

  • For high density routes fuel savings are expected to average 37%
  • Emissions reductions for these routes: hydrocarbons 60%, carbon monoxide 50%, and nitrogen oxide 40%


Other emission reduction programs Canadian Springs has employed:

1. Reduced idling

  • Average downtown trucks had 30%-40% idle time, now it is less than 5%.

2. Reduced speed

  • Reducing speed from 120km/hr to 80km/hr saves 20% in fuel use.

3. Tire pressure and engine maintenance

  • Proper tire pressure and engine maintenance reduce fuel use by another 10%

Driver training is the key to success!


Food and Beverage

Nestle Water Canada – Waste Management

  • Feb, 06 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


To continuously reduce our packaging and energy usage and improve waste reduction in our operations while maintaining quality, safety and customer services standards represents our major challenge. These improvements will help to drive efficiencies, shed costs and reduce the impact on the environment. Additionally, they will ensure continuous improvements in recyclable packaging and the diversion of packaging from landill, post consumer use.


There are five strategies in place to assure the Company’s leadership in the areas of waste and material management:

  • Use 100% recyclable packaging materials for every product produced, whether the bottle, the wrap or the tray;
  • Reduce packaging material use by working with suppliers on design changes that maintain functionality (i.e., bottle topload and sideload strength for shipping)
  • Challenge internal teams to improve on waste reduction and internal recycling levels
  • Increase recycling of products by working with government and industry on public spaces recycling, ICI recycling, multi-residential recycling and public education
  • Earn environmental certification from the world’s leading standards associations to confirm energy reduction achievements


Nestlé Waters Canada only uses 100 percent recyclable PET to produce its bottles, 100 percent recyclable HDPE to produce its caps, 100 percent recyclable PET to produce its wrap and 100 percent recyclable cardboard to produce its trays. All residential recycling programs in Canada have cardboard recycling programs in place and 93 percent of them support plastics recycling. The Company has reduced the amount of plastic in its 500ml. single-use plastic bottles by 30 percent since 2000, which has reduced the amount of energy the Company uses by 30 percent and the amount of greenhouse gases it produces by 22 percent. Use of the lighter 12.2 gram bottle has saved 4.59 million kilograms of PET resin annually in Canada, thus significantly reducing its carbon footprint. Nestle Waters Canada will reduce the size of its packaging by another 27 percent in 2010 with the next evolution of the Eco-Shape bottle. It is important to reduce the amount of plastic in our containers because the bottle represents 55 percent of our greenhouse gas emissions. Nestlé Waters Canada also produces all of its single-serve 500ml. bottles inhouse, eliminating 20,000 trailor loads of empty plastic bottles and reducing greenhouse gas emissions annually by 12,000,000 kilograms.

Nestlé Waters Canada and its industry partners pioneered public spaces recycling in Canada, entering into a $7.2 million, three-year agreement with the Government of Quebec and municipalities across that province in June 2008 to collect and recycle plastic beverage containers and other recyclable materials in public spaces. The program is capturing an estimated 85 percent of recyclables in public spaces, including plastic, glass, aluminum and paper, according to program management Gaia Environmental. Beginning in June 2009, Nestlé Waters Canada and its industry partners funded a two-phase pilot public spaces recycling program in Sarnia, Ontario, that, will be presented to the Province of Ontario with the objective of establishing the initiative across the province as a complement to the blue box system. The first phase saw 76 percent of plastic beverage containers, including bottled water, diverted from landfill. The study also confirmed that these containers represent just 5 percent of the public spaces waste stream. Across Canada, according to the provincial stewards responsible, plastic beverage containers account for one-fifth of 1 percent of the waste stream. Plastic water bottles account for 40 percent of that figure or .2 percent. If the Canadian bottled water industry disappeared tomorrow, there would be no appreciable reduction in the amount of recyclable materials going into the waste stream. Recycling rates across the country have improved by approximately 10 percent over the last five years.

Nestlé Waters Canada recently received ISO 14001 certification, which recognizes that the Company has established sustaining and continuously improving environmental management systems, specifically in the areas of energy efficiency, water conservation and waste management programs. The Company must set annual targets and achieve same to maintain its certification. For example, it has set targets that will see a reduction in energy usage by 17.1 percent, a reduction in water consumption by 4.1 percent and the recycling of 96 percent of its refuse this year. The Company reduced water consumption in 2008 by 10 percent and recycled 95 percent of its waste.


Food and Beverage

Frito Lay – Zero Waste

  • Feb, 04 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


Frito Lay Canada (FLC) has long been working to reduce waste sent to landfill, and has established a goal of reaching zero landfill (ZLF) status (which we define as sending less than 1% of manufacturing waste to landfill) in all of its manufacturing facilities. The program was founded on three pillars: 1) to reduce/eliminate the use of non-reusable and non-recyclable materials in FLC plants; 2) to reduce waste to landfill from FLC operations to zero; and 3) to transform waste disposal costs into material revenues. While the program has obvious environmental benefits, the FLC ZLF initiative also focused on decreasing waste expense and increasing recycling revenue.


The first step in the journey to zero landfill was to establish plant-level ZLF teams. The goal of ZLF is a large undertaking, thus cross-functional teams are necessary to lead the program effectively. With plant-level teams established, team members focused on identifying predominant waste streams and developing scorecards to track all waste leaving the facility. Once FLC’s waste streams were identified and quantified, a database of waste generation and related costs and revenues for each stream was established.

With the waste streams identified, the focus of the program shifted to the separation of waste. Appropriate receptacles were strategically placed around the facilities to separate and collect the waste. Employee training sessions were held to raise awareness of the various separation techniques. With the waste streams separated, the ZLF teams shifted their attention to finding end-users for the waste and identifying material revenue opportunities. The following is a list some of the FLC programs designed to divert production waste from landfill:

  • Waste oil used to make biofuel
  • Food waste used as animal feed
  • Potato starch recovered and sold
  • Packaging cartons reused several times and then recycled into new cartons
  • Waste packaging film recycling
  • Cardboard recycling
  • Damaged pallets recycling
  • Plastics and metal recycling

While diverting waste away from landfill is an excellent practice, reducing waste and eliminating the use of non-recyclable materials is superior. FLC employees are continually working to improve processes to reduce resource consumption and use more environmentally friendly materials.

FLC’s ZLF teams process data and review their program every 4 weeks on a local level. Best practices are then shared nationally as part of the company-wide effort to reduce FLC’s manufacturing waste to landfill to less than 1%.


FLC has had tremendous success with its ZLF program to date. In 2009, FLC has diverted over 92% of its manufacturing waste away from landfill sites. That equates to over 28 million kg of waste diverted away from landfill annually. The FLC Kentville, NS, site is on pace to achieve ZLF status by the end of the year with over 99% of manufacturing waste diverted from landfill.

In addition to the obvious environment benefits of landfill diversion, FLC’s ZLF program has also yielded exceptional financial returns. The company generates considerable revenue from starch, food waste, used oil and cardboard reuse streams. Furthermore, by diverting 28 million kg of waste away from landfill FLC will avoid the corresponding landfill charges. The net result is that waste disposal has been transformed from a operating cost into a revenue source; proof that what is good for the planet can also be good for business.

In nature there is no waste, and FLC is striving to employ biomimicry to learn from nature and transform its manufacturing operations to function without producing any unusable waste.

Going forward, active teams in each facility will continue promoting and directing FLC’s ZLF initiative. Our goal is to achieve ZLF across all of our facilities within the next three years.


Food and Beverage


  • Feb, 04 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


The Big Picture

VersaCold is a world leader in temperature-sensitive food handling, with an extensive network of 120 temperature controlled warehouses and distribution centers in the U.S., Canada, Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand. It also offers refrigerated transportation and other related services. VersaCold serves as a comprehensive, reliable partner to its thousands of customers—from processing to freezing and storing raw ingredients to total inventory management.

VersaCold began exploring demand response (DR) in 2007, looking for creative ways to reduce its energy consumption and costs. VersaCold evaluated multiple
demand response providers, but quickly zeroed in on EnerNOC, attracted by its proven experience and ability to accommodate VersaCold sites across Canada and the U.S. VersaCold executives especially appreciated the fact that EnerNOC programs are free from upfront costs—enabling the company to maximize its DR payments.

A growing number of VersaCold facilities participate in EnerNOC DR, including nine sites in Ontario and three in Pennsylvania. During DR events, these facilities reduce
energy use temporarily by shutting off or adjusting refrigeration, turning off compressors and battery chargers, and making other minor operational changes.
While these changes have virtually no effect on the food stored in VersaCold’s facilities, they enable major energy reductions totaling more than 3.2 megawatts (MW).
These reductions generate approximately $160,000 in annual payments from EnerNOC.

Reducing Consumption and Costs

Cold storage leader VersaCold is a major energy user. In fact, energy is one of its highest expenses, second only after labor. Its many refrigerated storage warehouses are energy-intensive facilities, thanks to chillers and other heavy-use equipment, which keep stored food—from poultry to vegetables to ice cream—at optimal temperatures. However, these heavily insulated facilities are able to maintain their low temperatures for hours. They offer the potential for major temporary energy reductions, without affecting stored food, making them ideal for participation in demand response.

VersaCold leaders were aware of the potential of demand response, and saw it as a natural complement to its other efforts to reduce energy demand and consumption, as well as environmental impact. “We’re always looking for ways to reduce consumption and costs, to reduce our carbon footprint, and to ensure sustainability,” says Ted Royals, director of engineering for eastern North America at VersaCold. “We saw demand response as another strategy to help us
manage and reduce our energy use—and to get paid for our efforts.”

EnerNOC’s proven DR expertise appealed to VersaCold. “EnerNOC came highly recommended,” recalls Royals. “And we appreciated the fact that their programs
involved no upfront, out-of-pocket costs. EnerNOC was clearly a win-win for us.” VersaCold selected EnerNOC as its DR partner in 2008, initially enrolling three
of its Pennsylvania sites (Lancaster, York, and Malvern) to participate in EnerNOC – PJM Emergency Load Response. It quickly expanded the roster to include multiple sites in the province of Ontario, becoming the first customer in the province to enroll in the EnerNOC Demand Response – Ontario program.

EnerNOC worked closely with VersaCold to evaluate its many sites and develop customized DR strategies for each facility, which vary in terms of size, design,
equipment, and other factors. “In general, we’re able to adjust our room temperature set points, operating pressures, and other factors so that we can cycle off various
energy-intensive pieces of equipment,” says Royals. “We may not completely shut down, but we reduce the amount of refrigeration temporarily.”

VersaCold facilities receive notification of DR events via email and phone. “EnerNOC does a fabulous job making sure our sites are well-notified,” says Royals. The collaboration continues during the event, with real-time coaching and advice that helps each facility achieve its committed energy reductions. For example, during a recent DR event in Ontario, an analyst in EnerNOC’s state-ofthe- art Network Operations Center (NOC) in Boston noticed that one VersaCold facility wasn’t trending in the right direction. Timely follow-up with the engineering room led to over-performance during the rest of the event, and ultimately a larger payment from EnerNOC. “When necessary, EnerNOC stays with our facilities throughout the event and follows up after, ensuring that we learn from
every event,” says Royals.

During implementation, EnerNOC installed free monitoring equipment and its PowerTrak® monitoring software at each facility. During DR events, PowerTrak enables
VersaCold facilities personnel to track their energy reductions in real time. “They can go to the web portal, look at their baseline and current use, and determine whether they need to make any other adjustments,” says Royals. Each facility retains control of how it achieves its energy reductions, a key element of the success of the program.

“During events, our facilities vigilantly monitor energy reduction levels, as well as the storage room temperature,” says Royals. “Having local control is very important to us, since each facility is unique.”

PowerTrak plays a key role during events. “PowerTrak is extremely helpful,” says Bob Simpson, chief engineer at one of VersaCold’s Toronto facilities. “We can see exactly where we are in terms of meeting our commitment. And EnerNOC stays in touch with us and helps get us where we need to be.” Simpson reports that his facility exceeded its commitment during each DR event, thanks to a clear energy reduction plan and assistance from EnerNOC.

The Results

Through temporary adjustments in its refrigeration, VersaCold is able to reduce its energy use by more than 3.2 MW across a dozen facilities in Canada and the U.S. Each facility contributes reductions appropriate to its size and baseline energy use, ranging from approximately 300 to 825 kilowatts. This major energy reduction helps stabilize the electrical grid during periods of high demand.

The food stored in VersaCold’s facilities is not affected by DR events, since these events are temporary. Stored materials are carefully monitored during events. VersaCold facilities always retain the option to restart refrigeration equipment if necessary.

The Benefits

EnerNOC’s ability to enroll multiple facilities in Canada and the U.S. efficiently and effectively is a critical benefit to an organization of VersaCold’s size and scope.
As a DR leader, EnerNOC was able to provide skilled personnel and proven best practices for reducing energy consumption at VersaCold’s cold storage facilities. As a result, the entire process—from enrollment to implementation to actual DR events—is seamless for VersaCold.

Other benefits that EnerNOC DR brings to VersaCold include:

Significant Payments

Participation in EnerNOC DR results in estimated annual payments of more than $160,000—funds that go directly to participating facilities. “We pass along the
earnings directly to the facilities that make
the cuts,” says Royals. “It gives sites more of
an incentive to achieve even greater energy
reductions.” Royals also points out that in
addition to these payments, VersaCold also
benefits financially by using less energy—
during events and beyond.

No Upfront or Out-of-pocket

Participating in EnerNOC DR doesn’t
require an initial investment in monitoring
equipment, software, or other start-up
costs—a difference that VersaCold executives
appreciated. “We know that any DR program
has its risks and rewards,” says Royals. “But
EnerNOC worked with us to help us get the
best results and highest payments from our
participation in DR, while minimizing risk.”
During implementation, EnerNOC installed
free monitoring equipment and PowerTrak
monitoring software at each VersaCold

Ease of Participation

The number of DR events varies by region,
and is defined clearly in the program details.
Per the terms of the EnerNOC Demand
Response – Ontario program, enrolled
facilities may experience as many as 25
events per year, making it a particularly
demanding program. EnerNOC streamlines
participation in this program by ensuring
that events go smoothly. EnerNOC’s ongoing
communication, coaching during events,
and responsive follow-up help make it easy
for VersaCold sites to participate in demand

In-house Control

During DR events, VersaCold facilities
personnel retain control over their equipment
and facilities. They can select the equipment
most appropriate for adjustment or
shutdown. And they can restart refrigeration
equipment based on conditions within their

Community Support

By reducing its use of energy and other
resources, VersaCold also passes along
benefits to the many communities where
its facilities are located. By participating in
EnerNOC DR, VersaCold helps protect local
communities from brownouts and blackouts.
It also helps keep electricity prices affordable
for businesses. Participating in EnerNOC DR is
just one example of VersaCold’s wide-ranging
commitment to corporate responsibility.

The Future

VersaCold relies on EnerNOC as its partner for
demand response. It continues to evaluate its
facilities on a regional basis in areas where
EnerNOC DR programs are offered. “When an
area becomes eligible for DR, EnerNOC works
with us to see what kind of revenues we
might be able to generate by participating,”
says Royals. “We take a careful look at all
opportunities and determine whether we
can participate. EnerNOC continues to
communicate and collaborate with us on
an ongoing basis, and help ensure that we
succeed with demand response.”





Food and Beverage

General Mills

  • Feb, 04 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


General Mills realizes that 90 to 95 percent of the food industry’s environmental footprint occurs in commodity production, supplier operations (including those that provide packaging) and transportation – areas we do not directly control.

Our key issue is identifying ways that we can make a significant, positive impact on the environment in areas that are ‘outside of our four walls’. Green Giant vegetables have been stewards of the environment for decades, being early adopters of pesticide and water management. However, in the last several years we have ramped-up our efforts to partner with growers and suppliers in order to further reduce the environmental impact of our products.


We recognize the importance of working with our suppliers to optimize environmental performance. Together, we can accomplish far more to minimize our impacts and improve the environment than we could possibly do alone. That’s why we developed the General Mills Environmental Champions Supplier Program. In this voluntary effort, we collaborate with our suppliers to explore current practices and measure our combined environmental impact. As a result of this fact-based assessment, we will develop plans and timelines to improve our joint environmental performance. This program will facilitate the development of practices and products that will protect and sustain the environment and natural ecosystems that our businesses depend on. This will not happen overnight, but we have begun this important effort.


Seed breeding advancements have resulted in better taste, texture and color. Not only has quality been enhanced, but we have reduced land and water usage through more efficient growing and processing methods. Green Giant improvements in hybrid varieties, for example, have resulted in higher yields, reducing the amount of land needed to produce the same amount of food. In fact, in the last 35 years, improved hybrids through conventional breeding have more than doubled the yield of sweet corn while reducing the acreage planted. In other words, the same amount of corn can be produced with less water, fertilizer and land.

“We’re producing the same amount of sweet corn on half as much land as we did 35 years ago,” says Lane Johnson, director of Agricultural Research for General Mills. “That’s what we need to do going forward. There will be increasing pressure for land and more competition among crops as global population and consumer demand increases.” Taking best practices global Johnson and his colleagues are taking the hybrid varieties and sustainable agriculture practices to Green Giant growers around the world. Green Giant agronomists work with local growers to minimize chemical treatment and reduce water consumption – while increasing their yield at the same time. In Mexico, for instance, broccoli farmers in Irapuato harvested a larger crop after cutting their use of a type of insecticide (organophosphate) by half since 2004. A quarter of the farmers also have converted to drip irrigation from furrow irrigation, and they are reducing their water use by nearly 1.2 billion gallons a year. “Farmers generally want to do the right thing and tend to be the best stewards of the land,” says Johnson. “They just need the resources, the opportunity and the tools.”


Food and Beverage

Heinz Canada

  • Feb, 04 2010
  • Industry Sector:Food and Beverage


Develop and teach sustainable agriculture to our tomato growers throughout the world to increase their overall yield, improve quality and efficiency, provide greater income, and protect their health. By helping to make tomato farming operations more sustainable, we’re not only protecting the earth, but we’re also ensuring a region’s livelihood for future generations.


Implement a holistic sustainable agriculture program that focuses on tomato seed development and farming practices.

Seed Development

HeinzSeed was founded in 1970 to meet the challenge of creating tomato varieties that are adaptable to various global climates and are best suited for processing. HeinzSeed produces non-genetically modified hybrid tomato seeds for sustainable characteristics through traditional breeding techniques at research facilities in California, Ontario, and Australia. The breeding research focuses on developing tomato varieties that:

  • Taste superior
  • Produce a higher yield
  • Remain ripe longer
  • Require less water
  • Resist disease

Sustainable Farming Practices

As part of our agricultural training program launched in 2000, our team of tomato experts travels the globe as part of an extensive education initiative to teach farmers about sustainable practices such as:

  • Water conservation and management
  • Soil analysis and restoration
  • Nutrient conservation and management
  • Pesticide management
  • Hybrid seed and plug transplant guidelines
  • Energy conservation and management


HeinzSeed is now the market share leader, recognized globally as the premier all-natural hybrid tomato seed company delivering the best tasting, highest field performance and most superior consistency of processing tomato varieties in the world.

  • Supply six billion hybrid tomato seeds each year to farmers in more than 30 countries
  • 30% of the world’s processed tomatoes are grown using Heinz seeds

Our seed development and sustainable farming initiatives have resulted in significant advances in tomato agriculture throughout the world:


  • Tomato yields have increased by 110% going from 20 tons per acre to 42 tons over the past 20 years
  • 50% of Heinz tomato growers have adopted irrigation efficiency through drip application methods over the past 5 years
  • All Canadian growers utilize locally grown greenhouse transplants maximizing hybrid seed usage and space utilization


  • Field yields increased by 65% over the last 25 years from 26 to 43 tons per acre
  • Use of highly efficient drip irrigation practices increased from 30% to 55% total acreage over the past five years


  • 58% yield increase versus traditional farming methods
  • Reduction in fertilizers and chemicals (30% nitrogen reduction) versus local system
  • More efficient water management program
  • Reclamation and improvement of soils and reduction in soil pH and salinity


  • 50% yield increase over the past ten years
  • 100% use of highly efficient plug seedling and mechanical transplanting practices


  • 20% increase in yield
  • Nitrogen reduction of 20%
  • Soil management systems that reduce salinity
  • Safe chemical handling systems introduced