Published on 10/26/20

Tackling our energy use

Acting against global warming

We currently own two chocolate factories: The Dodet site on the outskirts of Tain l’Hermitage and the historic Guironnet site in the town center. Our environmental plan covers these sites, as well as L’École Valrhona, our boutique, and the Cité du Chocolat. We closely monitor our energy usage in each of these different facilities.

We are pursuing two key strategies to reduce our environmental impact. One is cutting down our carbon footprint; the other is reducing our energy consumption, while also promoting alternative energy sources.

Both sites at Tain l’Hermitage have had ISO 50001 certification for the last four years. This acts as a guarantee that each will manage its energy use efficiently. To improve our energy consumption management, in 2017 we installed a new energy monitoring tool based on data mining technology with help from our partner Métron. This makes it easier to control our energy usage and identify where optimization is needed. Our work in this area covers every one of our major energy expenditures and is guided by our long-term energy plan.

 

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Looking towards 2025, our objective is twofold.

  • A 50% reduction in our energy consumption as compared with 2013
  • 79% of our energy mix to come from renewables

Refrigeration management

Valrhona has spent several years looking at how it manages its refrigeration needs, because this highly energy-intensive process accounts for 30% of the factory’s energy consumption.

A refrigeration distribution network has been in place for the past two years. Our objective is to both streamline and centralize our refrigeration capacities over the medium term. As such, all our refrigeration has been centralized since 2019, and a significant share of our former refrigerating equipment is no longer needed.

Centralized refrigeration has enabled us to reduce our energy consumption by 26%. As part of the same drive, we are optimizing the quantity and type of refrigerants we use on site, which is helping us to radically reduce our Scope 1 carbon footprint.

As well as reducing our energy consumption, we are looking at where our energy comes from and are promoting renewable sources.

For the last three years, 100% of our electricity has been supplied by certified purchases of hydroelectric power. By purchasing guarantee of origin certificates, we are helping to finance the renewable energy sector. In 2019, we made the choice to source our energy from a dam located less than 15 km from our production sites.