Cargill’s solar investment strengthens cocoa production in Ghana

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01 Dec 2017 --- Cargill has taken steps to modernize renewable energy infrastructure in Ghana by investing in innovative solar energy at a plant in the West African country. 

Cargill’s new solar power facility at its Cocoa & Chocolate site in Tema, Ghana has been officially inaugurated, bringing it one step closer to achieving its sustainability goals. 

The company’s energy project contributes to Cargill’s global strategy of investing in environmentally friendly, renewable ways of generating power for industrial production. By investing in renewable energy, Cargill says it is living up to its responsibility to find ways to continuously decrease the environmental impact of its businesses.

Solar plant to boost renewable energy capacity
The new solar plant, which opened its doors yesterday (November 30) during an event at the Tema site, is a fully automated, digital photovoltaic solar system. It augments energy needs at the site and boosts Ghana’s renewable energy portfolio by producing 764MWh of electricity annually. 

The solar energy produced at the plant is equivalent to powering nearly 400 homes with electricity for a year, according to Cargill.

Sustainable business goals
The solar project consolidates Cargill’s continued support towards a sustainable cocoa business in Ghana. 

“Cargill sets ambitious targets every five years to reduce greenhouse gas intensity, improve energy efficiency and increase renewables as a part of our portfolio,” said Pieter Reichert, managing director of Cargill Cocoa and Chocolate in Ghana.

“One of those targets is to increase renewables to 18 percent of our global energy portfolio by 2020. Today, 14 percent of our energy needs are met by renewables, and this solar project will help us realize our 2020 goal.”

Progress in Tema
The solar facility is just one of the innovative and technological solutions Cargill has implemented at the Tema site to improve its environmental footprint. 

Other recent projects include the installation of LED lighting, an energy-efficient grinding facility and a biomass boiler. Collectively, all four projects at the Tema sites have resulted in a 32 percent decrease in energy consumption, a 71 percent reduction of CO2 emissions and 66 percent renewable energy generation.

Click to EnlargeCollaboration with Ghanaian government
Thanks to close collaboration with the Ghanaian authorities, including President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo who commissioned the facility, the plant allows Cargill to support Ghana’s commitment to strengthening industrial production in the cocoa sector through a sustainable and energy-efficient investment. 

Guest of honor at the inauguration event, Minister for Energy, Hon. Boakye Agyarko Kyeremanteng, spoke at the ceremony.

“The government is committed to increasing the nation’s renewable energy generation capacity and is hopeful that others in the Ghanaian cocoa industry will follow Cargill’s lead,” he said. 
 
About the installation
The contractor of the project, Dutch & Co.(Gh.) Ltd, a company that specializes in energy efficiency through LED lighting and PV Solar installations, divided the installation capacity over an open field ground mount system of 413KWp and a Car Port system of 152KWp. 

In total, 2,136 solar panels were used, each with a capacity of 265Wp. To install the ground mount structure, a specialized Pile Driver provided the supporting structure for the panels, a technique most often used often for large-scale solar installations. 

The installation’s peak power generation period is between 11am and 3pm, during which period 15 percent of Tema’s electricity needs will be supplied by the solar panels.

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More than simply a food ingredients supplier, Cargill deeply understands our customers' strategies, consumers, distribution channels and competition. We deliver solutions that help the food industry and beverage manufacturers drive growth through new product innovation and reformulation. Cargill helps reduce costs through supply chain and manufacturing process efficiency and managing commodity price risk. Cargill helps our food industry and beverage manufacturing customers create unique products that fill product pipelines and reduce time-to-market by connecting our diverse food ingredients supplier capabilities — marketers, research scientist, application experts, risk managers and manufacturing process engineers — and seamlessly delivering these resources to customers. As a service and solution-oriented food ingredients supplier, our broad portfolio helps our customers address their food product development needs across the spectrum of applications and categories. Cargill helps our customers safely manufacture products every day around the world by reliably originating and distributing grain, oilseeds and other food ingredient commodities and by processing a diverse food ingredients supplier portfolio that spans core and specialty ingredients, ingredient systems and finished food systems.

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