Unilever’s food production facility in Purfleet, Essex has reduced its lighting energy consumption by 40% as the result of a project to replace its outdated fluorescent lamps with low-energy equivalents using T5 retrofit converter, Save It Easy® from Energys Group.

Reportedly the biggest margarine factory in the world, Unilever’s Purfleet facility produces spreads for household names like Stork, Flora and Bertolli. Understandably, its lighting needs are extensive and continual. Yet, with the costs associated with energy use and maintenance a growing issue, Unilever was keen to make sure its lighting was running as efficiently as possible.

New-generation T5 fluorescent lighting was identified as a cost-effective means to improve the Purfleet facility’s energy efficiency. However, demanding production schedules meant that any lighting upgrade needed to be as non-disruptive as possible. For this reason, choosing a retrofit solution – allowing the T5 lamps to be slotted into the existing light fittings – was considered the best route forward.

Save It Easy, a plug-in converter from Energys Group, was selected for the job, and 5,160 old-style fluorescent lamps across the Unilever site were replaced with T5 equivalents using Save It Easy.

“It was an extensive undertaking, with Save It Easy proving suitable for installation in production areas, warehouses, packaging areas, and offices,” comments Kevin Cox, Managing Director of Energys Group. “The team of Energys engineers ensured the installation went smoothly and with minimal disruption – a true turn-key service. Plus, Unilever has the peace of mind that comes with a five year warranty on both the ballasts the T5 lamps.”

As a result of the Save It Easy project, Unilever’s Purfleet site is set to slash its lighting energy consumption by a staggering 40%, saving 529,476 kWh of electricity every year. The means Unilever will net an estimated cost saving £60,370 a year, as well as making an annual carbon saving of 284.34 tonnes of CO2.

“The substantial cost savings netted by Unilever as a result of the lighting upgrade mean that the project is set to pay for itself in just 1 year and 9 months,” says Energys’s Kevin Cox. “This is a testament to how effective it can be, both environmentally and financially, to take advantage of the low-hanging fruit of energy efficiency through retrofit lighting upgrades.”

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