Hershey say two more of its plants have achieved zero-waste-to-landfill (ZWL) status, bringing the company’s count to six US plants — eight total facilities — that no longer dispose routine waste into landfills.
With the addition of the Y&S Plant in Lancaster, Pa., and the Robinson Plant in Robinson, Ill., the chocolate company has exceeded its goal to convert five plants to ZWL by 2015 two years ahead of schedule.
To achieve ZWL status, Hershey’s manufacturing facilities have both reduced their overall waste streams and increased recycling rates to approximately 90 percent, the company says. All remaining waste is sent to nearby waste-to-energy incinerators, eliminating the need for landfill disposal. These incinerators produce energy, which also reduces overall reliance on fossil fuels.
Hershey now has eight facilities that have achieved ZWL status:
- Hazleton Plant (Hazleton, Pa.)
- Reese Plant (Hershey, Pa.)
- West Hershey Plant (Hershey, Pa.)
- Y&S Plant (Lancaster, Pa.)
- Robinson Plant (Robinson, Ill.)
- Stuarts Draft (Stuarts Draft, Va.)
- Hershey’s Chocolate World (Hershey, Pa.)
- Eastern Distribution Center III (Palmyra, Pa.)
Founder Milton Hershey started the company’s first recycling center in Hershey, Pa., in 1937, long before recycling was a common practice. To further reduce its carbon footprint, the company has also added biogas-capturing equipment at four of its US facilities. By utilizing this energy-conversion equipment, the four facilities are less reliant on fossil fuels for energy.
In its other sustainability efforts, Hershey says it is on track to source at least 10 percent of its total global cocoa purchases from certified sources in 2013. The company also has set benchmarks for reaching 100 percent certified by 2020 as part of its 21st Century Cocoa Plan.
Hershey’s plants join several other facilities to achieve ZWL in recent months. Earlier this month, the Acuity Brands’ Carlisle, Penn. manufacturing and distribution center achieved zero landfill status, as certified by Link International.
In late September Volvo’s New River Valley assembly plant in Dublin, Va., achieved zero landfill status at its truck manufacturing operations.