Barry Callebaut partners with Empower New Energy to solarize chocolate production in Ghana
24 Jun 2022

Empower New Energy, the Norwegian solar investment company has partnered with Barry Callebaut – Ghana to expand solar production at their manufacturing site in Tema. The Barry Callebaut Group is the world’s leading manufacturer of chocolate and cocoa products with HQ in Zurich. Empower New Energy signed a contract with Barry Callebaut Group to install Solar PV panels on their factory site. The 640kWp project 100% financed Empower New Energy, will include PV installations on part of the factory roof, the roof of the admin building as well as the innovative technology of installing solar panels on the carport structures of their parking lot. This is Empowers’ 8th solar investment project and 2nd project in Ghana.

Barry Callebaut sources their raw products from several countries in West Africa, including Ghana. In Ghana, they have a cocoa processing facility in Tema, which will be the site of this project. Barry Callebaut is committed to making sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025, has a strong focus on sustainability and a strategy to reduce their carbon footprint throughout their supply chain which is one of their principal interests in this project.

The developer of the project is CMR Group (Control, Measure & Regulation) who will also be the engineering and construction partner (EPC). The Ghanaian SunPower Innovations will oversee the installation and O&M. Both partners have solid track records of PV projects. Renewable energy that will be generated per year: 0.98 GWh – this is equivalent to electrifying 618 households in Ghana, the project will curb 497 tonnes of CO2 per annum, and just under 12,500 tonnes of CO2 in its lifetime. We estimate the project will lead to or secure just under 100 local jobs (both direct and informal). This 0.64MWp Solar PV project is developed and implemented in partnership with the experienced international energy company CMR Group and SunPower Innovations.

Barry Callebaut Group announced in 2016 a bold ambition to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025 when it launched its sustainable program ‘forever chocolate’. Under the forever chocolate program, the company is committed to four targets to address the biggest sustainability challenges in the chocolate supply chain, including eradication of child labour from the supply chain, lifting more than 500,000 cocoa farmers out of poverty, to use 100% sustainable ingredients in all products and to become carbon and forest positive.

The CEO of Barry Callebaut – Krishnarkumar Ramanchandran Pillai said, “A key area we are using to reduce our carbon footprint is electricity generation through solar; to which end, we have in the first phase mounted a 0.5MW solar farm at our Tema site accounting for 6% of the site’s electricity needs. This project is the second phase which involves our collaboration with Empower New Energy to expand solar to cover our roof surfaces and carpark spaces. This will increase our solar penetration to 14% at the Tema site. In addition to reducing our carbon footprint, investing in solar will contribute to a stable energy cost and power supply to our critical processes and equipment. We believe that this partnership will go a long way to ensure that we meet our energy demands while staying carbon positive for our sustainability agenda”. Through this solar installation, an estimated 325 tons of carbon (CO2) emissions would have been reduced from our operations

Terje Osmundsen CEO of Empower, is proud to partner with Barry Callebaut, CMR and Sunpower. Our mission, to invest in renewable energy, is in full alignment with the UN SDGs of reducing poverty and fighting climate change. By joining forces, we can do even more to support sustainable growth in developing countries, help create new jobs and reduce emissions while also securing long-term recurring revenues for all investors.

About Empower New Energy

Empower New Energy is an award-winning impact investor in African renewable energy, with proven business and operating model. The company serves C&I clients and communities by mobilizing international capital & operating assets effectively.

About Barry Callebaut

The Barry Callebaut Group is the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products. The Barry Callebaut Group has been producing chocolate and cocoa products for over 175 years. They are the reference for innovation in the industry providing a comprehensive range of services in the fields of product development, processing, training and marketing. At Barry Callebaut, they are committed to sustainable cocoa production.

About CMR

CMR is a key player in the energy transition. Our aim is to facilitate access to the energy sources for the future. Our clients operating in the energy sector, industry and in the navy, all want to reduce their carbon footprint in the long term. CMR Group also develops and deploys turn key Solar PV installations in Africa and South East Asia. We support them with innovative low-carbon renewable solutions designed to improve, hybridise and optimise their energy systems or energy.

About SunPower

SunPower a leading renewable energy EPC (Engineering, Procurement and Construction) company in Ghana. Licensed by the Energy Commission of Ghana, we provide reliable and affordable off-grid, grid-tied and hybrid systems for homes, businesses and government agencies. Our systems are fine tuned to the environmental parameters of sub-saharan Africa.