It’s a case of ‘love it or hate it’ when it comes to Marmite – but using its waste to generate electricity has helped Unilever save millions of pounds.
The company said it has cut carbon emissions from its factory operations by one million tonnes since 2008, saving around €244 million (£175.8m) in energy costs.
That’s a result of its green initaitives, including harnessing waste materials from products such as Marmite and Flora to generate energy.
In the UK, Unilever has converted 18,000 tonnes of solid Marmite waste into methane, which is used to provide 30% of the factory’s energy. In South Africa, a bi-product of the seed oil from Flora is also used as fuel in boilers to produce electricity.
The company has also managed to cut energy use by 20% overall – enough to run 40 factories or cut emissions by more than 800,000 tonnes.
Currently, 28% of the energy used by Unilever’s factories and 39% of power comes from renewable sources. It has set a target of generating 40% of green energy by the end of the decade.
Pier Luigi Sigismondi, Unilever Chief Supply Chain Officer said: “Across our supply chain we are increasingly turning to energy provided by wind, solar and biomass, converting heat from our manufacturing processes into power for our factories.
“Climate change is having a huge impact on the environment and on business. Ahead of Climate Week in Paris, we are continuing to show that sustainability is a driver for growth and the only long-term option for business in a volatile world.”