MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--SunOpta (Nasdaq:STKL) (TSX:SOY), a U.S.-based, global pioneer fueling the future of sustainable, plant-based and fruit-based food and beverages, announced today its U.S. headquarters and innovation center in Eden Prairie, Minn. will self-produce up to two-thirds of its annual energy needs with its own solar installation. SunOpta’s 742 solar panels, which occupy 36,000 square-feet of its roof, are estimated to produce up to 447,667 kilowatt hours (kWh) on an annual basis, in turn reducing up to 317 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year.
Energy management is an important pillar of SunOpta’s company-wide sustainability goals. The addition of renewable energy use at its headquarters aligns with SunOpta's strategy to reduce its electricity footprint in its own plant facilities by 40% and natural gas by 30% as outlined in its 2022 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report. In 2022, SunOpta reduced electricity usage in its own U.S. and Canadian plant facilities by 31.7% from its baseline year in 2019.
“As a producer of plant-based food and beverages, sustainability is at the heart of who we are,” said Joe Ennen, CEO of SunOpta. “Solar is a triple win for us: A win for the environment, a win for the community as we use fewer public utilities and a win for the business, as solar delivers long-term cost savings. As we drive sales growth towards $2 billion by 2030, it’s important we do so as sustainably as possible, and our recent investment in solar is one of many ESG proof points.”
For context, using a common equivalency converter, the power generated by SunOpta’s solar panels is roughly equivalent to powering 40 homes for a year, or providing enough electricity to power a household refrigerator for 4.5 million hours.
Other sustainable features of SunOpta’s headquarters and innovation center include:
- Nearly 13,000 square feet of renewable bamboo flooring
- 920 LED light fixtures
- 630 plantings, six indoor trees, a living plant wall to welcome nature into the building and six skylights
- Five outdoor garden planters for employees to grow organic produce
- Four electric vehicle charging stations
The company is also working to achieve zero-waste-to-landfill at its manufacturing facilities and corporate headquarters. Six of its manufacturing facilities have already achieved this status and two others are awaiting third-party validation. SunOpta’s headquarters and innovation center is located at 7078 Shady Oak Road in Eden Prairie, Minn.
About SunOpta, Inc.
SunOpta (Nasdaq:STKL) (TSX:SOY) is a U.S.-based, global pioneer fueling the future of sustainable, plant-based and fruit-based food and beverages. Founded nearly 50 years ago, SunOpta manufactures natural, organic and specialty products sold through retail and foodservice channels. SunOpta operates as a manufacturer for leading natural and private label brands, and also proudly produces its own brands, including Sown®, Dream®, West Life™ and Sunrise Growers®. For more information, visit www.sunopta.com, LinkedIn and Twitter.