April 26, 2010
Frito-Lay Inc., Beloit, Wis., has been honored by Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce as the 2009 Manufacturer of the Year in the sustainability category. The awards recognize Wisconsin companies that demonstrate a commitment to business excellence that has a positive impact on the community and the state.
Green teams have been in the plant since the early 1990s. Currently more than 40 team members are involved in different compliance activities and helping the company identify ways to save energy.
“Because it takes several years from design and engineering to implementation of these technologies, you have to be planning far in advance,” said Mike Stahl, technical manager for the plant.
In the last 10 years, the Beloit plant has reduced its landfill contributions by 50 percent, its electrical consumption by 26 percent, and its use of natural gas by 35 percent.
In October 2009 the plant began a waste heat recovery system, by which waste heat during the manufacturing process is captured and distributed throughout the plant’s roof. “We’ve been heating the plant 90 percent for free this winter,” Stahl commented. The process also allows the plant to preheat water for corn cooking and cleaning operations.
Water usage also has been reduced 50 percent in the last decade. Starch is removed from the water as well. More than 3 million pounds of starch are generated in the Beloit plant and then sold to other manufacturers for use in a variety of products, such as adhesives and paper whiteners.
More than 99 percent of cartons, which are used to stack the product on retail shelves, are reused. The amount of cartons reused at the Beloit plant, for example, saves 400,000 trees a year.
Source: Beloit Daily News
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