- Highlights number of additional global programs -
FAIRPORT, N.Y., Jan. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Constellation Brands, Inc. (NYSE: STZ, ASX: CBR), a leading international producer and marketer of beverage alcohol brands, today underscored its ongoing commitment to sustainable business practices and corporate social responsibility (CSR) with the installation of the world's largest winery solar energy system at its Gonzales, Calif., facility. The company anticipates the project to be completed in early 2009. Once in place, the solar energy system will produce more than 1.7 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year, which will provide approximately 50 percent of the winery's total energy requirements. Electricity will also be exported to local residential customers during the winery's non-peak use periods. This is one of many sustainable business practice initiatives implemented at company locations around the globe which support Constellation's CSR efforts.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090115/NY59112 ) (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20040119/STZLOGO )
Through partnerships with Pacific Power Management, Mitsubishi Electric and Pacific Gas and Electric, 6,358 solar panels are being installed on the roof of the main building at the Gonzales winery, located near Monterey. The project, which is designed to decrease greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, is estimated through the lifetime of the system to annually reduce the facility's carbon footprint in an amount equivalent to planting 2,500 acres of trees, not driving an average automobile 25 million miles, or taking more than 2,000 automobiles off the road. Wines produced at Gonzales include Robert Mondavi Private Selection, Solaire by Robert Mondavi, Black Box and Hayman & Hill.
"Since Constellation's founding more than 60 years ago, preserving and protecting the land and environment from which our products originate has been very important and central to our ongoing success," said Rob Sands, Constellation Brands president and chief executive officer. "The solar energy project is one of several regional initiatives that demonstrate our commitment to reducing our environmental impact and ensuring the legacy we leave for future generations is a positive one in the communities where we have a significant presence."
In 2007, Constellation Brands implemented a global CSR platform that is based upon three pillars: sustainable business practices (environmental efforts), philanthropy (corporate giving) and social responsibility (addressing the societal impact of beverage alcohol). The Constellation initiative builds on regional projects that align global strategic business objectives with doing the right thing for people and the environment.
For example, in Australia where water is at a premium in many regions, Constellation's Banrock Station has been built on sound environmental principles since its founding in 1994. The Banrock Station Wine & Wetland Complex covers a 4,200 acre area on the Murray River in South Australia, and the wetland restoration program earned a listing by the world's most prestigious wetland organization, Ramsar, as one of the 1,200 Wetlands of International Importance. Over 25 percent of the vineyards have been converted to subsurface irrigation which is expected to result in water savings of nearly 30 percent in this drought-affected area. Additionally, Banrock Station has contributed more than AUD$5 million from the sales of its wines toward global conservation efforts around the world, with a focus on Constellation's core markets in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
In Canada, Constellation's Jackson-Triggs and Inniskillin wineries at Niagara-on-the-Lake in southern Ontario province have partnered locally with Vandermeer Greenhouses to turn grape pomace into 'green' electrical energy rather than send it to a landfill. The methane gas produced by the decomposition of the residue, grape skins and seeds, is captured and used to generate electricity and heat for both Vandermeer operations and nearby residential customers. In the U.K., a new bottling and warehouse facility currently under construction will significantly reduce the number of shipping containers of imported pre-packaged wine from Australia, South Africa and the Americas. The facility, which is to be commissioned in 2009, will bottle bulk wine on-site, thereby reducing the transportation carbon footprint and will further reduce the surplus of green glass used in packaging for wine shipped to the U.K.
In late 2008, Constellation entered into an arrangement with the Toronto office of Fairfax, Virginia-based ICF International in a collaborative effort to define Constellation's global carbon footprint. This data gathering and analysis effort is expected to be complete late spring or early summer 2009, and it will enable Constellation to better determine how to reduce its long-term greenhouse gas emissions and the resulting environmental impact.
"Over the years, Constellation Brands and its operating companies have established and implemented programs that preserve and protect the environment. On the philanthropy side, we have invested in community programs ranging from support for the arts, education, health and medicine to sponsorships of specific causes we are passionate about. We are also actively involved in a number of global organizations that encourage and promote practices for responsible alcohol beverage consumption," Sands continued. "We are proud of our work to date, yet there is still much more to accomplish."
About Constellation Brands
Constellation Brands, Inc. is a leading international producer and marketer of beverage alcohol in the wine, spirits and imported beer categories, with significant market presence in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Australia and New Zealand. Based in Fairport, N.Y., the company has more than 250 brands, sales in about 150 countries and operates approximately 50 facilities worldwide. It is also the largest wine producer in the world and an S&P 500 Index and Fortune 500(R) company. Major brands in the company's portfolio include Corona, Black Velvet, SVEDKA Vodka, Robert Mondavi, Clos du Bois, Ravenswood, Blackstone, Hardys, Banrock Station, Nobilo, Kim Crawford, Inniskillin, Jackson-Triggs and Arbor Mist. To learn more about the company and its products, visit Constellation's Web site at www.cbrands.com.
SOURCE Constellation Brands, Inc.
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Web Site: http://www.cbrands.com
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