Gray AE’s Brian Hafendorfer on Sustainability in the Pet Food World
Industries are increasingly turning to renewable energy sources to power their facilities, and the pet food industry is at the forefront. With solar, wind, and hydropower growing more sophisticated by the day, leaders in the sector are seeking a more holistic way to run shop. Director of Gray A/E Services Brian Hafendorfer met with Pet Food Processing to discuss the benefits of going green in the pet food world.
Sustainable design has been a consistent priority within Gray’s DNA. Design-build capabilities provide the leverage of creating a more integrated approach that helps customers in their goals to reduce key environmental impacts. The switch can be attributed not only to consumers valuing sustainability, but companies who are finding cost-savings in the process.
Brian Hafendorfer met with Pet Food Processing to delineate the ways modern design is serving the mission of sustainability and LEED-friendly practices on and off site.
“Renewable energy provides many direct and indirect benefits to facilities,” said Hafendorfer. “These include reducing strain on the grid and infrastructure and allowing users access to energy in developing countries or areas that do not have access to reliable power.”
When it comes to the actual implementation of renewable energy, pet food companies have several options. The first step in this process must be completing an energy needs assessment in order to determine which source(s) would be the best solution.
“Common systems in food processing operations include solar power, solar hot water, wind power, hydroelectric, and geothermal systems. Depending on the system, building size and type, and availability of roof or land, these systems can be located both on site or at another location that is connected to the electrical grid,” said Hafendorfer
With a growing number of alternatives available, notable companies are partnering with design and construction firms to create facilities that significantly reduce impact through the reuse of heat and water. Companies are joining forces with Gray to achieve zero environmental impacts through operations.
Hafendorfer also shared that the benefits of sustainability in pet food go beyond the first world. “Renewable energy provides many direct and indirect benefits to facilities. These include reducing strain on the grid and infrastructure and allowing users access to energy in developing countries or areas without reliable power.”
Looking forward, the future is bright. Experts predict the pet food industry will continue its shift toward renewable energy, which means this is just the beginning of consumers demanding sustainable construction and design as capabilities continue to advance.
“The adoption of solar and wind energy solutions is increasing,” Hafendorfer shared. “Sophisticated capabilities of the electrical grid are being utilized to take advantage of distributed energy resources…The conversation around renewable, sustainable energy solutions is also growing rapidly with greater acceptance and implementation around the world.”
To read the full article in Pet Food Processing, click here.
For more information on Gray’s design services, visit www.gray.com/services/design/