Simplot - Portage la Prairie
Business Profiles

J.R. Simplot Company

How Efficiency Manitoba helped maxmize the energy efficiency of Simplot’s facility expansion 

Since becoming operational in April 2020, Efficiency Manitoba has been dedicated to helping all Manitobans enjoy the benefits of saving energy. They’ve seen a diverse array of participants come through their incentive programs, from homeowners to businesses to entire communities. And some of these customers have undertaken particularly large energy efficiency projects—J.R. Simplot Company being one of them.

J.R. Simplot Company (“Simplot”) completed a 400,000 square foot expansion to their potato processing facility in Portage la Prairie, more than doubling their processing capacity. Efficiency Manitoba helped them incorporate energy efficiency improvements into their design and operations, which will deliver significant energy and bill savings and establish it as one of the most energy-efficient facilities of its kind in the world. Here’s how it was done.

THE PROJECT
Simplot’s facility expansion included designing and implementing several energy efficiency enhancements, maximizing the energy efficiency of its production and operations, as well as constructing a more energy-efficient building itself. Efficiency Manitoba was pleased to provide technical support and financial assistance while working alongside consultants and other energy efficiency professionals to ensure energy-efficient measures were incorporated.

A total of ten processing related energy efficiency opportunities were supported through Efficiency Manitoba’s Custom Energy Solutions Program. The most significant electricity-saving upgrades included installing variable speed drives on Simplot’s many fans and pumps. Significant energy savings also result from a series of upgrades associated with their new refrigeration systems on their processes and as well as their large warehouse. The installation of a heat recovery system, equipped with a series of heat exchangers which removes heat from the fryer exhaust to preheat process hot water and incoming fresh air through the building HVAC system, produces over 34% of Simplot’s natural gas savings.

Through the support of Efficiency Manitoba’s New Buildings Program, the plant expansion is realizing electricity and natural gas savings associated with improved HVAC, building envelope, and lighting systems. The final energy model reveals that the expansion exceeds the Manitoba Energy Code for Buildings requirements by 14.5%.

“We appreciate the incentives available for energy efficiency projects, and our partnership with Efficiency Manitoba,” said Don Strickler, Energy Engineer at Simplot. “These incentives and efficiency expertise enable us to justify projects that otherwise may not have been implemented.”

CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS
Efficiency Manitoba provided Simplot with financial incentives totaling $2.9 million for incorporating energy efficiency enhancements and measures into their expansion. This reduced their project payback period to just over three years! 

Beyond the incentive they received, Simplot will realize significant energy and financial savings for years into the future:

  • Estimated annual bill savings: $1.7 million
  • Estimated annual electricity savings: 20.5 GWh (gigawatt-hours)
  • Estimated annual natural gas savings: 5.7 million m3 (cubic metres)

Natural gas savings are expected to provide annual greenhouse gas emission reductions of over 11,000 tonnes of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent). So not only will Simplot realize impressive energy and bill savings, they’ll also reduce their environmental impact and contribute to a greener, healthier Manitoba.

YOU CAN SAVE, TOO
If you’re looking for ways to save energy, money, and the environment, Efficiency Manitoba can help. They offer financial incentives, programs, and technical expertise to help you along your energy efficiency journey. Go to efficiencyMB.ca to learn more.

How Efficiency Manitoba is supporting new energy-efficient construction

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