News and insight for North America's fresh produce buyers
Carl Collen

BY CARL COLLEN

Sun Belle's green initiative

Berry specialist installs rooftop solar array system at its Maryland warehouse and distribution centre

Sun Belle's green initiative

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In the US, Sun Belle has launched a new green initiative at its 64,000ft2 Jessup, Maryland warehouse and distribution facility with the installation of a 450 kW rooftop solar array system.

According to the berry specialist, the array is projected to generate 592 MWh annually, offsetting more than 35 per cent of the facility’s energy needs.

“Due to our constant refrigeration demands, we sought a solution that would offset rising utility costs and make a positive environmental impact,” said Janice Honigberg, president of Sun Belle. “Aurora Energy offered a perfect solution for us with the added benefit of being able to utilise land adjacent to our facility as a pollinator meadow.”

The solar array, utilising SunPower P19-395-COM modules, covers 33,500ft2 of roof space and will offset approximately 420 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually – enough to power 48 homes.

“Sun Belle’s investment in rooftop solar capitalises an underutilised asset – the rooftop of their facility," said Dr Fariborz Majhouri, chief executive of Aurora Energy. "They have converted this warehouse roof space to a small power plant that can produce clean energy while saving money. It’s a win-win scenario.”

Construction of a second array of solar panels (225 kW ground mounted) is scheduled to begin later this autumn and will further offset the facility’s needs by generating another 287 MWh annually, increasing the beneficial impact of Sun Belle’s green initiative.

The ground mounted system will utilise another 12,680ft2 of land adjacent to the Sun Belle warehouse and will also include a pollinator meadow, which the group said further affirmed its commitment to the environment.

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