Plant-based cheese leader Daiya announces it has received LEED certification for its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility and offices in Burnaby, British Columbia. In doing so, Daiya states the Canadian site is the largest plant-based food facility in North America to receive the coveted environmental certification.
“Achieving LEED status at our facilities demonstrates our commitment to minimizing our environmental impact”
According to Daiya, obtaining LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) recognition has been critical to its mission of producing high-quality dairy-free alternatives with minimal impact on the planet. The company’s Burnaby plant is said to be the largest stand-alone plant-based food facility in North America, and Daiya went “beyond what is expected of brands” to earn the distinction.
Some of the programs and processes it implemented include:
- Designing both office and production facilities to use less energy with high-efficiency LEED light fixtures, occupancy sensors and dimmers and high-efficiency HVAC systems.
- Deconstructing an already existing facility to divert 77% of all waste and demolition from the landfill.
- Installing high-performance and low-flow plumbing fixtures throughout the building to save 35% water usage over conventional plumbing fixtures.
- Instituting recycling programs in both office and production areas as well as a “Green Cleaning” program.
- Improving access to quality transit, installing electric vehicle charging stations, offering carpool-only parking spots and creating bicycle facilities.
- Creating an ongoing project to reduce the amount of plastic used in packaging by examining more eco-friendly options.
“We are so excited to announce our new LEED certification status in our state-of-the-art, first-of-its-kind, plant-based food manufacturing facility and office building,” said Nicola Shaw, director of corporate social responsibility at Daiya.
She continued, “We aspired to build a workspace that encourages innovation and creativity, and that supports our team and our planet. Achieving LEED status at our facilities demonstrates our commitment to minimizing our environmental impact by reducing carbon emissions, energy and waste, as well as conserving water and prioritizing sustainable materials.”
Preparing to launch “tastier, meltier” cheese
The Burnaby facility also houses the company’s fermentation site, following Daiya’s multi-million dollar investment into fermentation technology announced earlier this year. By combining traditional cheesemaking with modern tech, the company is creating better plant-based cheese that is “tastier, meltier and stretchier than any other on the market” and will launch in North American retail later this year.
“It’s important that now we are fully in the facility, we take a look at where we are, and then where we need to be,” said Shaw. “Achieving LEED certification is the first step. We will continue to work with leading industry experts to assess and establish our environmental impact goals in the coming months.”cheese plant-based dairy-free fermentation investment industry