United Natural Foods awarded EPA’s Energy Star Rating for its distribution facility
Providence, R.I. United Natural Foods’ Chesterfield, N.H., distribution center has been awarded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star rating, marking it as one of the most efficient distribution facilities in the nation for superior energy efficiency and environmental protection. Energy Star is a leading national metric for evaluating building energy efficiency.
To qualify, the Chesterfield facility had to place among the top 25% of the most energy-efficient facilities in the U.S. Buildings that earn the Energy Star rating typically utilize 35% less energy and emit 35% less CO2 into the atmosphere when compared with average buildings. Additionally, the facility meets or exceeds standards for thermal comfort, indoor air quality and luminance levels.
Features at United Natural Foods’ Chesterfield distribution center that support its rating include energy-efficient, motion-activated T-8 lighting in the full-case warehouse area and motion-activated T-5 lighting for the repack mezzanine. Committed to exceptional indoor air quality, as well as energy-usage reduction, the company implemented enhancements to the administration area’s HVAC system including the replacement of the main office air-conditioning unit as well as upgrades to the duct system that greatly improved efficiency in the delivery of both heating and cooling.
The 319,000-sq.-ft. Chesterfield facility serves as a regional distribution hub for customers in New England; New Jersey; metro New York and all of New York State. Thirty percent of the total floor space within the facility is served by mechanical cooling equipment. Repack selection utilizes paperless “pick-to-light” technology, which greatly reduces the amount of paper used in order processing.
“Further demonstrating our ongoing and deep commitment to environmental stewardship, we have been focused on operating energy efficient and sustainable buildings across our entire supply chain, and we are very pleased to receive this prestigious recognition,” said Tom Dziki, senior VP sustainable development.
Williams-Sonoma CEO retires, new leader named
SAN FRANCISCO Williams-Sonoma announced that Howard Lester will retire from his position as chairman and CEO and as a member of the board at the May 2010 annual shareholders’ meeting. He will continue, however, to assist the company in a consulting and advisory role through December 2012 and have the title of chairman emeritus.
Lester has led the company since 1978 when he purchased it from its founder, Chuck Williams. At that time, the company had four stores, a small catalog and $4 million in revenue.
Williams-Sonoma said that its board intends to appoint Laura Alber as the company’s CEO as well as a nominee to the board of directors. Alber joined the company in 1995 and was appointed to her current role as president in 2006.
Alber stated, “It is an exceptional honor to follow in the footsteps of one of the most highly esteemed executives in retail. Howard has been an outstanding mentor, and he is retiring at a time when the foundation of the company has never been stronger. We are confident in our direction and, together with the leadership team, ready to execute against those strategies that will grow and improve our businesses, deliver great products and services to our customers and enhance shareholder value.”
Costco honored for sustainability efforts
INDIANAPOLIS SustainableGrocer.com, an organization which manages sustainability practices within the food and grocery retail sector, has named Costco as the 2009 Sustainable Grocer of the Year.
Costco received the award for its sustainable efforts including energy reduction, offering a wide selection of organic food and its recycling programs. The company was also recognized for reducing packaging waste and working to reduce its carbon footprint through effective delivery systems which utilize the most efficient trucks available.