Recycling waste is important, but the more we can reduce consumption of materials and energy, the more environmentally and financially sustainable we can be.
With a processing plant operating 6 days a week, Turner’s must get creative to minimize energy consumption as much as possible.
Turner’s was able to save 167,435 kwh of electricity in 2021. That’s enough energy to power 15 houses for an entire year! This 58.5% reduction in energy use was made possible by upgrading to LED lighting throughout the processing facility and coolers.
LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs produce light up to 90% more efficiently than traditional incandescent light bulbs. Visible light is produced when electrical currents pass through a microchip– illuminating tiny LEDs.
The process of pasteurization was created in 1864 by Louis Pasteur and became common practice in the milk industry in the early 1900s. Raw milk can harbor dangerous bacteria, which is why it must be pasteurized before hitting store shelves.
Turner’s uses the most common type of pasteurization in the United States, HTST (High Temperature Short Time) Pasteurization. During this process chilled raw milk is passed through steel plates until it reaches 161⁰F. After 15 seconds, the milk is rapidly cooled to below 40⁰F
This method is in comparison to vat pasteurization, which requires the milk to be held at 145 degrees for a full 30 minutes.
By making the switch from vat pasteurization to HTST pasteurization, Turner’s has been able to demonstrate some impressive energy savings—increasing the pasteurizer’s efficiency from 85% to 93% over the years. The increase in efficiency means that we only need to create 7% more new energy to pasteurize our products.
Water that is used within the pasteurization machinery for the process is recaptured to be used over again in the next pasteurization process. This water is also used for the initial rinse of the equipment, followed by a food grade cleaning solution and final sanitation.
In addition to producing and distributing dairy and tea products, Turner’s is also equipped with a fully operational diesel garage to service our fleet of about 100 trucks. The oil in each truck is changed regularly as a part of routine maintenance. Instead of discarding the used oil, it is repurposed to heat the garage. By reusing the oil, we can use a traditional natural gas furnace only as a backup. In a typical year, the used engine oil is enough to maintain the temperature of the garage at 70 degrees for 4-5 months of the year!
Click here to see how we are reducing the amount of material that enters the waste stream simply by using reusable milk crates to deliver our products.