Reducing waste and consumption: company perspectives

Doing more with less is a key element of sustainability. Here, four IFRA Regular Members outline steps they are taking to use resources such as water and energy more efficiently, and to reduce emissions and waste.

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Lowering emissions

Firmenich

 

Firmenich reported a 24 per cent reduction in its CO2 rate in 2010 against a 2005 baseline. 

In the three years to 2010 the company cut SO2 emissions by 69 per cent – representing 150 tonnes of SO2 – through projects that included the installation of emission gas treatment equipment at a plant in Kunming, China. 

Firmenich’s use of catalytic chemistry – the speeding up of chemical reactions by reducing energy requirements – has allowed some molecules to be obtained in single rather than multi-step processes. The result has been the company’s largest-selling flavour ingredient Furaneol that uses 20 per cent less energy and generates 20 per cent less waste. 

On a kilo per tonne basis, Firmenich reduced its use of gas, electricity, oil and coal by 26 per cent from 2005 to 2010. It aims to have 90 per cent of its factories around the world partially powered by renewable energy by 2015. 

Firmenich has introduced solar power at sites in its sites in Switzerland, South Africa and Brazil and in June 2010 at the company’s Princeton, New Jersey site, a new solar installation came online featuring 3,000 photovoltaic panels that could produce 12 per cent of the plant’s electricity and save more than 900 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions every year. 

 

Givaudan

 

Givaudan has set a target to reduce CO2 emissions by 25 per cent per tonne of production by 2020 against a 2009 baseline. 

An employee awareness week lead by the Green Team at Bromborough in the UK saw a decrease is energy use by ten per cent, while new techniques relating to spray-drying saw a reduction in wash down and drying times of 19 per cent cutting CO2 emissions by 150 tonnes. 

By installing energy-efficient lights at the company’s Carthage site in America, electricity consumption was cut by 250,000kWh. 

The introduction of LED lights at Jigani in India saw a saving of 13,000kWh in 2010 while during the same year timers fitted to roof ventilation exhausts created energy savings of 51,000 kWh. 

At Givaudan’s Dutch Naarden plant, changes to spray-drying methods saw gas savings of around ten per cent, cutting 11 tonnes of CO2 emissions. 

At Sant Celoni in Spain through new operational efficiency measures 142 tonnes of CO2 and 142 MWHh were saved. 

The Givaudan Pedro Escobedo site in Mexico burns non-chlorinated organic by-products on-site reducing emissions of SO2, NOx and CO2. Burning the by-products on site in boilers creates steam that generates energy savings of 15 per cent and cuts out the need for heavy fuel oil. In 2010, the site was awarded the Industria Limpia clean industry certification from the Mexican Environmental Protection Agency. 

 

Symrise

 

Symrise aims to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions per product unit sold by a third in relation to 2010 values. Examples of improvements include:

  • In Brazil a gas oxidizer introduced at Sorocaba reduced emissions in the area.
  • In Colombia Symrise joined forces with a group of environmentally sustainable companies that take part in projects such as carbon dioxide calculation.
  • Symrise has introduced ‘Total Productive Maintenance’ a concept run by employees that identifies process inefficiencies and finds solutions that save resources. Since 2007 more than 1,400 improvements have been introduced.

Cutting waste

IFF

 

International Flavors & Fragrances, Inc (IFF) reduced its hazardous waste by 9.6 per cent per metric ton of production during 2012.

By 2020, IFF intends to reduce hazardous waste by 25 per cent through waste reduction plans and greater utilisation of green chemistry.  The use of green chemistry is allowing IFF to create new processes that use fewer hazardous raw materials, generate less hazardous waste, and create a safer workplace. 

Examples of waste reduction include:

  • IFF employees at the manufacturing site in Haverhill, Suffolk, UK, boosted recycling over the past two years, which reduced waste and earned significant recycling rebates.
  • In Benicarló, Spain, the use of green chemistry techniques helped conserve energy, decrease hazardous waste and ultimately reduce costs. 
  • IFF’s site in Chennai, India, uses composting to reduce waste.

 

Symrise

 

At Symrise’s German plant in Holzminden, the wastewater system has been completely modernised and regular training seminars introduced for employees.

Symrise is cutting the use of hazardous chemicals where possible and replacing them with ‘atom-economic’ reactions that minimise waste.

Symrise has introduced ‘Total Productive Maintenance’ a concept run by employees that identifies process inefficiencies and finds solutions that save resources. Since 2007 more than 1,400 improvements have been introduced.

 

Firmenich

 

By 2010 Firmenich had achieved an 11 per cent absolute reduction in hazardous waste tonnage from its 2005 baseline. The 2010 goal was to reduce hazardous waste per tonne by sales by 20 per cent. The company achieved a 45 per cent reduction. The tonnage recycled has increased by 21 per cent from 2005 to 2010. Green teams in individual Firmenich plants are constantly identifying opportunities to recycle.

Firmenich’s research into biogradation, green chemistry, white biotechnology and green biotechnology has played a significant role in the reduction of energy and waste. The company aims to develop new perfumery ingredients that are completely biodegradable – a standard that exceeds the 2007 requirements of REACH (the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and restriction of Chemical substances regulation set by the EU).

At Firmenich’s Alesund site in Norway equipment has been installed to turn organic production waste into compost material that is 10 per cent of the waste’s original weight and volume. Tests are now underway to see if it is suitable for agricultural fertiliser.

At Firmenich’s Princeton site in New Jersey more than 85 metric tonnes of ethanol containing waste in a year has been sent to a recycling facility where it is recycled and sold to refineries for use as a gasoline additive.

Firmenich’s use of catalytic chemistry – the speeding up of chemical reactions by reducing energy requirements – has allowed some molecules to be obtained in single rather than multi-step processes. The result has been the company’s largest-selling flavour ingredient Furaneol that uses 20 per cent less energy and generates 20 per cent less waste.

Since 1987 Firmenich has invested in white biotechnology – a process that uses enzymatic reactions or fermentation rather than chemical synthesis to make ingredients from natural materials such as CO2, glucose or fat rather than petroleum. The result has been that new raw materials have been derived from nature, waste converted to compost and new ingredients created for perfumers’ palettes.

Firmenich plans to open a new research centre in Shanghai in 2011 dedicated to Plant Biology to study raw materials for the flavour and fragrance industry. The aim is to improve agricultural processes, use less land and increase economic potential for local communities.

Saving energy

Symrise

 

Symrise aims to reduce its energy consumption per product unit sold by a third in relation to 2010 values. Examples of improved efficiency include:

  • Across its Europe, Africa and Middle East divisions, Symrise is reducing the use of hazardous chemicals where possible and replacing them with ‘atom-economic’ reactions that minimise waste, accelerate the distillation process and increase capacity while cutting energy use.
  • LED lamps have replaced conventional light bulbs in Singapore with water heaters powered by solar panels.
  • In France, Spain and Germany motion detectors were installed in laboratories, offices, warehouses and bathrooms to cut energy consumption.
  • In the US the installation of new air compressors by Symrise significantly reduced energy consumption.
  • Symrise has introduced ‘Total Productive Maintenance’ a concept run by employees that identifies process inefficiencies and finds solutions that save resources. Since 2007 more than 1,400 improvements have been introduced.

 

Givaudan

 

Givaudan has set a target to reduce energy consumption by 20 per cent per tonne of production by 2020 against a 2009 baseline. Examples of energy reduction include:

  • At Givaudan’s Dutch Naarden plant changes to spray-drying methods saw gas reductions of ten per cent, saving 11 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
  • An employee awareness week lead by the site’s Green Team at Bromborough in the UK saw a decrease in energy use by 10 per cent, while new techniques relating to spray-drying has seen a reduction in wash down and drying times of 19 per cent. The site has experienced a saving in CO2 emissions of 150 tonnes.
  • By installing energy-efficient lights at the company’s Carthage site in America electricity consumption was cut by 250,000kWh.
  • The introduction of LED lights at Jigani in India saw a saving of 13,000kWh in 2010 while timers fitted to roof ventilation exhausts generated energy savings of 51,000 kWh.
  • At Sant Celoni in Spain new operational efficiency measures in 2010 led to saving of 142 tonnes of CO2 and 142 MWHh.

 

IFF

 

International Flavors & Fragrances Inc (IFF) has committed to reduce electricity use across the company by 10 per cent by 2012 (per metric ton of production) against a 2007 baseline.

Recent examples of efficiencies implemented include:

  • In 2010 IFF’s manufacturing facility in Tilburg, Holland, reduced its normalised energy use by 8.4 per cent compared to 2009. The facility also began buying green electricity from hydroelectric power stations cutting indirect CO2 emissions in half. Plant managers achieved the energy reductions in part by installing equipment that improves the efficiency of electric motors. This new equipment alone reduced Tilburg’s energy use by four per cent. Other eco-efficiency improvements included better roof insulation, more efficient ventilation systems and decreased compressed air and steam condensate losses.
  • IFF’s South Brunswick facility in New Jersey, America, has replaced old steam chillers with high-efficiency electric versions. The new system is six times more energy efficient than the old configuration, saves US$250,000 per year in energy costs and reduces emissions by over 600 tons per year.
  • IFF’s facility in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, recently embarked on a project to promote the rational use of natural resources with a focus on power consumption. The programme involved reducing electrical consumption from HVAC systems; upgrading transformers; installing light-motion detectors; better mixing control  and installing translucent, thermal-insulated roof tiles in the storage area. Now the site only needs electric light in the storage area after 4pm. The improvements have cut energy consumption by seven per cent.

 

Firmenich

 

Firmenich has introduced solar power at sites in its sites in Switzerland, South Africa and Brazil and in June 2010 at the company’s Princeton, New Jersey site, a new solar installation came online featuring 3,000 photovoltaic panels that could produce 12 per cent of the plant’s electricity and save more than 900 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions every year. 

A wind and solar energy installation is planned for Firmenich’s Newark, New Jersey site in 2011. 

On a kilo per tonne basis, Firmenich reduced its use of gas, electricity, oil and coal by 26 per cent from 2005 to 2010. It aims to have 90 per cent of its factories around the world partially powered by renewable energy by 2015. 

Conserving water

Givaudan

 

Givaudan has set a target of reducing municipal and ground water per tonne of production by 15 per cent by 2020.

Even though the company improved its water efficiency per tonne of product by 10 per cent from 2009 to 2010, huge amounts of water are still required for cleaning and cooling. And while economies of scale are possible when it comes to cleaning, as production rises it’s not always possible with cooling.

However, consumption can still be reduced in other areas for example:

  • At Sant Celoni in Spain simply by using ‘eliminated by-products’ rather than fresh solvents, the same level of cleanliness was achieved. The move now saves the plant €129,000 every year and reduces waste reduction by 100 tonnes.
  • Fitting motion sensors that detected movement near urinals in men’s bathrooms saved more than 81,000 litres of water annually at Givaudan’s Ashford site in the UK. Water use was cut by 75 per cent and they were rolled out across the plant. New urinals at the Cuernavaca plant in Mexico saved the operation 151,000 litres of water per year.
  • An employee awareness week lead by the Green Team at Bromborough, UK, saw a water use reduced by 19 per cent.
  • A partnership between Unilever and Givaudan at Jaguare, Sao Paulo, Brazil saw a reduction of 100,000 litres of water in nine months and nine tonnes of CO2 by reorganising production batches.

 

IFF

 

International Flavors & Fragrances Inc (IFF) committed to reduce water use by 10 per cent per metric ton of production by 2012 against a 2007 baseline, but by 2010 that target had already been surpassed and a decrease of 14 per cent was recorded.

Examples of water reduction measures across IFF worldwide include:

  • At IFF’s flavours plant in Chennai, India, where water is precious, the company installed a system to catch rainfall from the site’s 60,000-square-foot roof and divert it into the groundwater raising the water table. A similar system has also been installed at the company’s nearby fragrance plant.
  • At IFF’s fragrance ingredients facility in Zhejiang, China, the plant collects steam condensate from the heating system and uses the water for cleaning, saving 16,500 metric tons of water, 3,500 gigajoules of energy. The plant also uses recycling processes that reduce wastewater by 1,500 metric tons per year.
  • In 2010, at IFF’s flavours and fragrances facility near Mexico City, the company began using grey wastewater for landscape irrigation saving 400,000 litres of water a year. Additionally, The installation of low-flow fixtures now saves more than a million litres of water per year and water use has been cut by 2.5 per cent.

 

Symrise

 

Symrise aims to reduce its water consumption per product unit sold by a third in relation to 2010 values. Examples of improvements include:

  • At Symrise’s German plant in Holzminden, the wastewater system has been completely modernised and regular training seminars introduced for employees.
  • A SRMS production management system introduced in China has led to better control of material feeding quantity while meters ensure better water consumption monitoring.
  • In Chile new cleaning procedures have been introduced and training procedures initiated to optimise water use.
  • Symrise has introduced ‘Total Productive Maintenance’ a concept run by employees that identifies process inefficiencies and finds solutions that save resources. Since 2007 more than 1,400 improvements have been introduced.