Why be energy efficient?
Tight profit margins and rising energy prices create a strong case for energy efficiency in the food and beverage sector. Reducing energy costs through investment in energy efficiency can make a significant difference to the bottom line.
A focus on energy efficiency can also enhance customer loyalty and a company’s reputation for responsible environmental performance.
Additional benefits can be delivered through lower water and chemical costs, increased plant productivity and improved product quality.
Food and beverage processing plants are large users of energy for refrigeration, cooking, heating, boilers and steam generation, sterilising, conveyors, and auxiliary equipment. Significant energy savings can be achieved through the following strategies:
- Murray Goulburn Co-operative - Energy Efficiency Best Practice 2003 (Opens in a new window)
- Department of Industry
- PDF 162 KB
Staff know-how combined with sound measuring and monitoring enabled Murray Goulburn to achieve savings of $400,000 per year, with a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 3,500 tonnes.
- Bakers Delight - Energy Efficiency Best Practice 2003 (Opens in a new window)
- Department of Industry
- PDF 228 KB
Through the Energy Efficiency Best Practice program, Bakers Delight’s designed a showcase bakery at its operation in Mascot. The bakery showcased best-practice building design, baking procedures and equipment efficiency, achieving a 32% reduction in annual energy costs compared to a standard Bakers Delight bakery. This was achieved without impacting on product quality, customer satisfaction or staff comfort.
- Mushroom Exchange Production Plant - Industrial Refrigeration 2008 (Opens in a new window)
The Mushroom Exchange processing plant reduced its refrigeration energy usage by 35%, by replacing old inefficient compressors, improving temperature control and maximising the efficiency of the refrigeration system.
- Richmond Dairies freezer room upgrade 2013 (Opens in a new window)
- The Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air-conditioning and Heating (AIRAH)
- PDF 836 KB
Richmond Dairies replaced two inefficient freezer rooms, which allowed them to achieve improved product quality and efficiency. The project was partially funded with a grant from the Australian Government’s Clean Technology Investment Program, and the case study includes a description of the company secured funding through the grant process.
- Smarter Resources Smarter Business Case Studies 2013
- Sustainability Victoria
Case studies showing how small to medium sized businesses in Victoria are saving tens of thousands of dollars a year by reducing their energy or materials use with support from the Smarter Resources Smarter Business program.
- Winery Energy Saver Toolkit 2013
The Winery Energy Saver Toolkit (WEST) includes procedures, templates and resources to help small to medium sized wineries identify the key energy efficiency opportunities and assess the business case for investing in energy-efficient equipment and process upgrades. It covers energy efficiency opportunities in six key technology areas as identified by the South Australian Wine Industry Association (through engagement with its members):
- refrigeration and insulation
- compressed air
- hot water
- Energy Efficient Equipment Toolkit 2013
Use this toolkit to understand and collect the right kind of information so your business can make informed commercial decisions on equipment upgrades and process improvements.
This Toolkit aims to help small to medium sized food businesses to:
- assess benefits and value of energy efficient alternatives
- choose actions and upgrades to energy efficient equipment in their operations.
- Food South Australia
- Energy in Dairy 2012
This series of fact sheets provides examples of the range of technologies and strategies available to improve energy efficiency on a dairy farm. Fact sheet topics include an overview of energy efficiency, solar panel systems, solar hot water systems, thermal heat recovery, LPG water heating and variable speed drives.
- Victorian Department of Primary Industries
- Eco-Efficiency Toolkit for the Queensland Food Processing Industry 2004 (Opens in a new window)
This eco-efficiency toolkit has been developed for food processing companies in Queensland, to increase their awareness and uptake of eco-efficiency.
- Queensland Government
- PDF 3.8 MB
- Food and drink processing: Introducing energy saving opportunities for business (Opens in a new window)
The UK Carbon Trust website includes a range of energy saving advice for food and beverage manufacturers. This includes an overview of key carbon saving opportunities, energy saving advice for key energy using technologies and a series of case studies of how different companies achieved significant energy savings.
- Carbon Trust (UK)
- PDF 2.75 MB
- Industrial Refrigeration and Chilled Glycol and Water Applications Technology Report 2011 (Opens in a new window)
This report outlines 15 energy saving technologies available to increase the energy efficiency of an industrial refrigeration plant. Where possible, for each technology the annual energy savings, capital costs and payback periods have been estimated by considering examples.
A range of relevant best practice guides are also available for specific sub-sectors in the food and beverage sector, such as meat and livestock, dairy, fruit and vegetable, confectionery processing, breweries and wineries.
- Energy Efficiency and Greenhouse Working Group (2003) Towards a National Framework for Energy Efficiency – Issues and Challenges Discussion Paper, Energy Efficiency and Greenhouse Working Group, p. 6 ↩