Pepperidge Farms to Power Bakery with 1.2 MW Fuel Cell

FuelCell Energy, Inc., Pepperidge Farm, Inc., and the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund announced that they have partnered to install a 1.2 megawatt (MW) fuel cell at Pepperidge Farm’s Bloomfield, CT, bakery. The initiative is being supported by the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF), a ratepayer fund administered by Connecticut Innovations Inc., which will provide $3.5 million of the cost.

The 1.2 MW fuel cell will be manufactured by FuelCell Energy, Inc., of Danbury, CT, a manufacturer of clean power plants for commercial, industrial and utility customers.

This will be the second fuel cell installation at the 260,000-square-foot Pepperidge Farm Bloomfield plant, which opened in 2003. A smaller, 250-kilowatt (kW) fuel cell was installed in January 2006, also with assistance from CCEF and FuelCell Energy. Once operational in summer 2008, the new fuel cell will supply about 57% of the total electrical needs for the bakery. The two fuel cells combined will provide about 70% of the required electricity and are expected to contribute to the reliability of electricity to the site.  Additionally, excess heat from the new fuel cell will be channeled to support bakery processes, which will help reduce fuel needed for plant boilers.

“Pepperidge Farm is making excellent use of all the attributes of the fuel cell,” said Lise Dondy, President of CCEF.  “Not only are they deriving a significant portion of their required electricity from this fuel cell, but they are also effectively utilizing the fuel cell’s thermal output to enjoy the added benefit of being able to operate with less dependence on the grid.” 

“By using our ultra-clean DFC® fuel cells which operate 24/7 with an electrical efficiency of 47% and thermal efficiencies of up to 80 percent, Pepperidge Farm stands to reduce its power costs while lowering emissions and increasing manufacturing reliability,” added Richard Shaw, Director of Business Development for FuelCell Energy.

“When a customer like Pepperidge Farm signals its satisfaction by substantially expanding its investment in FuelCell Energy power plants, it can serve as a model for others,” Shaw said.

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