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U.S. Foodservice Lightens Energy Bills

Swapping to high-efficiency light bulbs at U.S. Foodservice Lubbock is helping the local division cut an average 3,450 kilo-watt hours (kWh) from its daily electricity use—or about enough to power 111 average American homes for a day.

During the past two years, the division has added roofing insulation, installed new refrigeration compressors and upgraded coolers and freezers. Collectively, these changes saved the company between 10,000 and 30,000 kWh per month.

But it was a lighting project completed in July, as part of a company-wide energy initiative, which really made the difference, says John Frankhouser, vice president of operations at U.S. Foodservice Lubbock, based in Lubbock, TX.

In Lubbock, that effort replaced 334 high bay fixtures in both its 142,000-square-foot warehouse and 11,000-square-foot truck shop with high efficiency T7 bulbs. Occupancy sensors, which turn lights off during periods of inactivity, were installed.

These additions, combined with the prior improvements, cut the division's average daily use by 3,450 kWh or 26 percent. The energy savings results in a reduction in CO2 emissions equal to removing about 180 cars from the road each year.

"We're proud of our efforts to conserve energy and to help preserve our local environment," says Larry Luman, president of U.S. Foodservice Lubbock. "We've shown that just one change, even in a small operation like ours, can make a huge difference."

Last month, the more energy efficient operation caught the attention of an account manager at local utility Xcel Energy, who contacted Frankhouser.

"He wanted to find out exactly what we were doing to get those results," Frankhouser says.

Additionally, since the Lubbock division began tracking its recycling efforts in June as part of a corporate-wide operations excellence program, it has kept more than 20 tons of material out of local landfills including:
• 16.4 tons of unprepared steel;
• 3.24 tons of corrugated cardboard; and
• 1.65 tons of white office paper.

U.S. Foodservice Lubbock is also using large, reusable rubber bands to secure select food products for in-house storage instead of hundreds of pounds of shrink wrap each year.

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