Unilever Ice Cream Wins $21 Million from DoE To Reduce Carbon Emissions

March 26, 2024
Four of its U.S. plants will replace natural gas boilers with electric boilers and industrial heat pumps using waste heat recovery.

Similar projects to significantly reduce carbon emissions at four of Unilever’s U.S. ice cream factories won a $20.9 million award from the U.S. Department of Energy, the company announced March 25.

The proposed project would cut 14,000 metric tons of carbon emissions per year, a major step in moving toward carbon neutrality for the factories that produce Ben & Jerry’s, Talenti, Magnum, Breyers and other Unilever brands. Well, at least brands Unilever owns today.

The main part of all four projects is replacing natural gas boilers with electric boilers and industrial heat pumps using waste heat recovery. Unilever reached 100% renewable grid electricity globally in 2020 and is in the process of moving all its workplaces to 100% renewable energy.

The facility upgrades will significantly reduce carbon emissions and will create a pathway to address 100% of heat-related process emissions at the factories in Missouri, Tennessee, and Vermont.

This project was chosen for award negotiations by the Department of Energy as part of its Industrial Demonstrations Program for its potential to reduce emissions, benefit local communities and serve as a model for further decarbonization throughout the food & beverage sector.

Ironically, Unilever announced last week it’s spinning off its ice cream businesses worldwide – they account for 16% of Unilever’s global sales – and cutting 7,500 jobs, or about 6% of its workforce.

By the way, Kraft Heinz just yesterday announced it won a $170 million government grant to cut emissions and overall energy use from 10 U.S. plants.

Kraft Heinz Among Recipients of $6 Billion in Govt. Awards for Decarbonization | Food Processing

About the Author

Dave Fusaro | Editor in Chief

Dave Fusaro has served as editor in chief of Food Processing magazine since 2003. Dave has 30 years experience in food & beverage industry journalism and has won several national ASBPE writing awards for his Food Processing stories. Dave has been interviewed on CNN, quoted in national newspapers and he authored a 200-page market research report on the milk industry. Formerly an award-winning newspaper reporter who specialized in business writing, he holds a BA in journalism from Marquette University. Prior to joining Food Processing, Dave was Editor-In-Chief of Dairy Foods and was Managing Editor of Prepared Foods.

Sponsored Recommendations

Troubleshoot: Grittiness in gluten free cookies

Learn how to adjust gluten free cookie recipes for a softer texture.

Clabber Girl: Rising Success

Uncover how Clabber Girl Corporation achieved a remarkable 7% growth and improved manufacturing efficiency by seamlessly integrating Vicinity's batch manufacturing solution with...

Intelligent Blends: Taking Technology to the Next Level

Find out how our friends at Intelligent Blends use VicinityFood and Microsoft Dynamics GP to produce the best coffee around.

Key ingredient: Mother Murphy's Laboratories

Flavorings manufacturer Mother Murphy’s Laboratories integrates front office with production facility — improving operations from initial order to final invoice.