One of the world’s largest processors of sheepmeat, Alliance Group Limited, aims to reduce carbon emissions by 3,300 tonnes over the next three years, as part of a new energy management agreement with the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).
The agreement, announced in Southland on Friday by Alliance Group chief executive David Surveyor and EECA chief executive Mike Underhill, includes a thermal and electricity energy use reduction of approximately 10 gigawatt hours per annum by 2017. This is the equivalent annual energy use of about 960 households.
Surveyor says reducing the company’s energy use makes good business and environmental sense and that the new partnership with EECA is the next phase of Alliance Group’s energy management journey.
“Energy efficiency is a key strategy to ensure the business is sustainable and competitive in the domestic and international market. If we achieve our targets, we can expect to save approximately $620,000 in energy savings annually, which can then be used to make further investments in our operations and improve returns for our farmer shareholders.”
According to Surveyor, the meat company has significantly improved its energy use over the last decade and the continued partnership with EECA will help identify new energy efficiency opportunities which would lower on-going costs of production and make better use of resources.
Alliance Group processes 6,000,000 lambs, 1,000,000 sheep, 200,000 cattle and 115,000 deer each year, with more than 85 percent of the livestock supplied by the company’s 5,000 farmer shareholders.
EECA chief executive Mike Underhill has praised Alliance’s commitment to making energy efficiency a key focus of its business operations and is calling for more energy-intensive industries, such as the primary industries, to set a higher standard for energy efficiency and the associated carbon reduction.
“Alliance Group is one of the increasing number of New Zealand companies that are investing in good energy management as part of a smart and sustainable business approach,” he says.
It is estimated that New Zealand firms could collectively save the country $1.6 billion in costs every year through technology upgrades and process-improvement.
Mike Underhill says EECA is working with some of the country’s largest energy users to develop collaboration agreements that help companies achieve savings in a structured way.
“Businesses wanting a competitive edge should invest in smarter energy management to save money and improve operations. Energy efficient companies make significant gains by reducing carbon emissions, improving the bottom line and building a brand that is valued by its consumers. It doesn’t get much smarter than that.”
Alliance Group is a farmer-owned and supplied co-operative with eight processing plants across the South Island and lower North Island. The company produces 30 percent of New Zealand’s sheepmeat, 10 percent of beef and 30 percent of venison and exports to 65 countries around the world.
AFFCO, ANZCO, and Silver Fern Farms are also engaged in energy management programmes with EECA.