T&G Global has marked an energy saving milestone by signing a new collaboration agreement with EECA at its Whakatu pipfruit packing and storage site near Hastings.

T&G Global Chief Executive Officer Alastair Hulbert and EECA Chief Executive Andrew Caseley visited T&G orchards and cool store facilities, where energy usage improvements have been made over the past year, before signing the new agreement.

Mr. Hulbert says T&G formalised its relationship with EECA in late 2015 and set an initial target of reducing energy use by two GWh by 2018 however that target has already been reached after 12 months with EECA’s support.

“The team at EECA has been hugely instrumental in enabling us to reach our energy reduction target early and it’s exciting to be signing a new collaboration agreement with them to identify areas where we can make further energy savings and reduce emissions.”

Over the past year, T&G has made improvements in high energy areas at 16 of its offices, growing and market sites across New Zealand. The power savings, which equates to the annual energy usage of 280 homes, were achieved through changes to lighting, fans, refrigeration and by introducing heat recovery technology.

T&G is focused on reducing energy use and emissions across its business but also water, waste and land care. “Our biggest business partner is the land on which we grow,” says Mr Hulbert. “We’re committed to treating it gently and balancing what we take out of it with what we give back through our sustainability commitment, Growing Green, which also covers riparian plantings on our orchards including those in Hawkes Bay.”

EECA Chief Executive Andrew Caseley congratulated T&G on its achievement. “T&G has made great strides in a short space of time. This new agreement proves how serious it is about achieving sustained savings in the future. When large energy using businesses save energy and emissions, it’s good for the economy and good for New Zealand.”