Listed food processing firmis completing a Kshs 300 million solar power generation project at its five Nairobi (2), Nakuru (2) and Eldoret manufacturing sites as part of its sustainability endeavours.
Speaking ahead of the Africa Climate Summit 2023 that kicks off in Nairobi next week, Unga Group Managing Director Joseph Choge said the firm has adopted solar power solutions as a part of an agenda to advance green growth.
Unga Group, Choge said, continues to embed climate action and sustainability as a crucial part of its business strategy and is, among other things, investing heavily in green projects, including the solar energy project, as a way of diversifying our energy sources and avoiding overreliance on the national grid.
This solar initiative, he confirmed, is part of Unga’s innovative energy program, which aims to increase the company’s uptake of solar energy by diversifying the energy sources, boosting efficiency, and reducing operational costs.
He added that adopting solar power units will help the total food company slash its power costs by more than 27%, occasioning more than Kshs 80 million annual savings. Further, by adopting solar power solutions, Unga Group is now on course to reduce its reliance on the national power grid and reduce its carbon footprint by 2,454 tons of CO2/year.
“At Unga Group, we are deliberately pursuing a green growth agenda by adopting environmentally friendly solutions in all our operating touchpoints. The initial investment is undoubtedly heavy, but we remain focused that the returns will be attractive in the fulness of time as we continue to prioritise climate action as one of our operating pillars,” Choge said.
He added, “The solar installation at our five manufacturing sites underscores the Unga Group’s commitment to reducing its carbon footprint and embracing eco-friendly production.”
He said that by solarising the manufacturing sites, we will utilise clean and renewable energy for our operations and reduce our carbon footprint. We are diligently pursuing an expansive solar energy project to diversify our energy portfolio, mitigate reliance on the national grid, and enhance energy resilience.
The effort to solarise the manufacturing sites is part of Unga Group’s transformative journey towards net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Besides installing solar PV panels, Unga Group also has other environmental sustainability efforts in place, which it is currently intensifying, including using energy-efficient bulbs and lights across all sites and installing low-energy LED lights with motion sensors to ensure that lights are on only when required.
Unga Group’s commitment to sustainability aligns with its mission to create lasting value for stakeholders, customers, and the environment. By implementing these solar energy projects, the company aims to set a precedent for responsible business practices and inspire other manufacturers to take similar steps towards a more sustainable future.
In addition to installing Solar units at Unga’s facilities, the group is implementing broader energy reduction initiatives through its Continual Improvement Program, eliminating waste, improving efficiency and supporting reliability through robust preventative maintenance. Last year, Unga Group emerged as the overall winner at the Energy Management Awards (EMA) 2022, organized by the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) in the Electricity Medium Voltage Savings category and also picked the first Runners Up award in the Overall Energy Management category. This attests to the Group’s culture towards responsibly managing resources and positively impacting the environment.