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Ohio EPA Director Recognizes Conagra Brands’ Troy Plant for Exceptional Environmental Stewardship
Ohio EPA Director Craig W. Butler is honoring Conagra Brands in Troy today with a flag-raising event to highlight the facility’s many achievements as environmental stewards in the local community. The Troy plant has achieved gold-level recognition in Ohio EPA’s Encouraging Environmental Excellence program.
“Conagra’s team approach encourages all employees to submit ideas for process improvements. The environmental benefits from this inclusive approach have resulted in lower water and electric use, more food scrap composting and less waste going to landfills,” Director Butler said. “This conserves Ohio’s resources and benefits the company’s bottom line. We are pleased to honor Conagra Brands for its environmental leadership.”
Ohio EPA’s E3 program recognizes businesses and other organizations for completing environmentally beneficial activities and serves as an incentive for companies to commit to ongoing environmental stewardship. E3 recognition has four levels: Achievement, Silver, Gold and the newest Platinum level.
The 750 employees at Conagra Brands’ Troy plant produce frozen bakery products and Slim Jim meat snacks. As a group, they have committed to reducing the plant’s footprint in key environmental areas including water usage and food waste. Using updated equipment, the plant has reduced its water consumption by 2 million gallons a year while also managing food waste responsibly. Partnering with a third party, Conagra has redirected more than 4,425 tons of scrap dough and other food waste to animal feed or compost. Wood pallets that are not repairable also are composted.
The Troy plant is focusing on keeping materials out of landfills. Conagra works with a company to redirect soiled cardboard for energy production, keeping more than 90 tons of cardboard a month out of landfills. Additionally, the Troy plant recycles aluminum cans and plastic bottles, diverting several thousand pounds of waste from landfills each year. In 2016, the Troy plant’s efforts reduced water use by 22 percent, electric use by 5.5 percent and resulted in more than 90 percent of its waste being diverted from landfills.
“Conagra Brands is dedicated to driving out waste throughout all of its operations,” said Jeff Erwin, Troy plant manager. “The collaborative work we are doing here at our plant in Troy demonstrates how employees can make a big impact by coming together to do what’s right for both the environment and the business.”
To obtain recognition for stewardship, an organization can work through levels of recognition including Achievement at the base level; Silver Level recognizing outstanding accomplishments in environmental stewardship; and Gold Level recognizing comprehensive environmental stewardship programs. The new Platinum Level recognizes organizations that have expanded their environmental programs beyond their own facility to make a positive impact on the surrounding community. All levels require a commitment to meet or exceed environmental regulatory requirements.
Through the E3 program, Ohio EPA’s Division of Environmental and Financial Assistance helps businesses receive recognition for environmental stewardship efforts. To learn more about the E3 program and the nomination process, please visit www.epa.ohio.gov/ohioe3.aspx or call 1-800-329-7518.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.