By Staff Reporter
A 600kW solar plant installed by Distributed Power Africa (DPA) for Kefalos has helped to transition one of Zimbabwe’s largest dairy producers to a cost reducing, clean and green energy source of power.
Cost reduction has become the mantra for businesses the world over and for Zimbabwean run manufacturing companies, this has not been any different.
Solar energy has become a good way to reduce manufacturing costs, allowing companies to reduce their energy bill by up to 30% while also reducing their carbon footprint.
Kefalos’s transition to solar energy will allow them to keep essential operations running at their Bhara Bhara Factory along Mubaira Road.
Kefalos manufactures a growing range of dairy products for the Zimbabwean and export markets.
The switch to solar energy will ensure their products are brought to the consumer at minimal damage to the environment, allowing the company to meet its ESG goals and maintain competitiveness on a regional and global scale where consumers are becoming more and more conscious of associating themselves with brands that uphold good manufacturing practices.
Kefalos became a pioneer in the dairy industry when they switched on the DPA installed solar plant, which provides up to 50% of Kefalos’ energy requirements when the factory is running at full capacity while reducing their carbon footprint significantly.
The plant’s annual energy production of 999.6MWh saves 599,000kg of carbon emissions and saves over 6,200tonnes annually. The grid-tied system also allows for the solar plant to supply energy to the national grid when the power demand from the Kefalos factory is below the solar plant’s power output.
According to Kefalos Head of Marketing Pam Tairoodza, “For dairy companies such as Kefalos, efficient electricity supply is not only essential but critical, as the processing and handling of perishable goods requires 100% power up-time. This investment in green energy has ensured that we minimize the impact of power interruptions, ensuring business continuity every day.”
DPA is the renewable energy business of Cassava Technologies. Mr Norman Moyo, Chief Executive Officer of DPA, said, “Kefalos deployment has proven to be one of our most complicated deployments to date as it required close coordination and integration with ZETDC substation and distribution network. The successful connection to the grid has opened up a significant opportunity for DPA to deliver larger and unique solar embedded grid tied solutions beyond 10MW particularly to large users, mines and factories in the country. I am proud of the dedication of our engineers and support we received from ZETDC on this land mark project”
In addition, Mr. Moyo went on to comment that, “While the recently announced 600 MW capacity added to the grid by ZESA through Hwange Power Station will greatly stabilize energy supply in Zimbabwe, we expect energy costs to increase. Our customers are keen to increase their solar deployment to deal with adverse energy costs.
“We are experiencing an increase in demand for grid-tied solar systems from our commercial and industrial users. DPA continues to provide financing for the solar and battery storage on a lease model. This allows customers to better control their escalating energy costs and deploy their capital to their core business.”
The use of generators as backup power is becoming increasingly expensive because of the rising cost of fuel, and many companies are now investing in more economical solar solutions.
Unstable grid power has interrupted operations for many companies, increasing the demand for cleaner and more reliable renewable energy.