Renewable energy: Nestle’s Dubai factory now the UAE’s largest private solar plant

By Guan Yu Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

Nestle’s Dubai factory is UAE’s largest private solar plant ©Nestle Middle East
Nestle’s Dubai factory is UAE’s largest private solar plant ©Nestle Middle East

Related tags: Nestlé, Middle east, Dubai, Uae, solar power, Renewable energy

Nestle Middle East's Al Maha factory in Dubai has started generating renewable energy with its 20,000 photovoltaic (PV) panels, that will supply 85% of the factory’s annual electricity consumption.

It is UAE’s largest ground-mounted private solar plant, which will generate 7.2GWh of electricity per year, and eliminate 4.5 million kilograms of CO2​ per year.

Maggi Bouillon, Maggi Excellence Soups, and a variety of Nescafe coffee mixes are just some of the products produced at the Al Maha site, according to Rainer Mueller, the communication & marketing services director at Nestle Middle East.

Solar ambitions

Nestle has recently announced its ambition to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, which means it will need to create 100% renewable electricity in all its factories, warehouses, logistics and offices.

So far, 28,000 PV panels are being installed at the three manufacturing sites of Nestle in Dubai.

Nestlé Dubai Manufacturing is also installing 5,800 PV panels generating 2,400 GWh of electricity annually, while Nestlé Waters is installing 2,600 PV panels generating 940 GWh of electricity annually.

Mueller said: “The shift to solar power has a positive impact on reducing carbon emissions​.”

The systems in total will generate a total of 10GWh of electricity per year, and eliminate at least six million kilograms of CO2​ emissions annually.

Environmental impact

In a recent media conference, Yves Manghardt, chairman & CEO at Nestle Middle East mentioned four pillars to Nestle’s journey into zero environmental impact, they were water, zero waste, packaging, and greenhouse gas emission.

Mueller added: “We have reduced fresh water use by 42% per ton of product and achieved zero waste to landfill at our factories and warehouses in the Middle East. We are accelerating our actions to achieve our commitment to have 100% of our packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025, and will further reduce greenhouse gas emissions as well as increase the use of renewable energy​.”

Nestle Middle East owns and operates 18 factories in the region and had since 2010 achieved a 34% decrease in energy consumption, and 28% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions per ton of product. The company also produced zero waste for disposal at its food manufacturing sites in the region.

Nestle is also playing an active role in developing plastics collection, sorting and recycling schemes across the world, through Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) actions.

In the Middle East, Nestle is a partner of the EPR Coalitions in Abu Dhabi and Jordan.

Mueller said that they are currently working on developing schemes for the collection, recycling and re-usage of PET/plastics.

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