The company announced the winners of its 2015 Sustainable Development Awards, and says in addition to conserving water and cutting waste, the 82 entries received this year collectively:
- Optimized and improved packaging, while using 15 million pounds less material.
- Reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 11,500 metric tons.
The 2015 winners are:
Climate Change & Energy Efficiency — ConAgra Foods’ Lamb Weston Facility in Hermiston, Oregon.
- Hermiston improved freezing capability by installing a Velocity Air Stack to better direct airflow in their freeze tunnel.
- The project resulted in the elimination of a 500-horsepower compressor, reducing electricity use by 4.3 percent.
Water Resources: Conservation & Wastewater Management — ConAgra Foods’ Grocery Facility in Helm, California.
- Faced with one of the most severe droughts on record in California, Helm focused its attention on reducing fresh water use during tomato fresh pack.
- By maximizing the use of water reclaimed from tomatoes, the facility reduced fresh water use by over 40 percent, conserving 22 million gallons.
Solid Waste Reduction & Recycling — ConAgra Foods’ Lamb Weston Potato Facility in Twin Falls, Idaho.
- Twin Falls explored opportunities to minimize frozen waste while ensuring the same product quality, testing frozen grader screens with fewer holes in their screening process.
- Installation of screens with 66 percent fewer holes provided the same quality product while eliminating over 1,000 tons of potato waste.
Sustainable Business Innovation — ConAgra Foods’ Lamb Weston Meijer Potato Facility in Bergen op Zoom, Netherlands.
- After a successful pilot test, Bergen op Zoom applied a new technology to fundamentally change how potatoes are preheated in preparation for cutting.
- This technology reduced water use by 18.5 million gallons, increased frozen recovery by 1 percent, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by over 900 metric tons.
Award of Excellence — ConAgra Foods’ Snack Facility in Waterloo, Iowa.
- Waterloo previously landfilled packaged pudding produced during flavor changeovers, sending high-quality pudding to waste.
- This project eliminated over 1,000 tons of packaged food waste by successfully identifying a market for a blended pudding SKU.