Virginia Eagle Distributing wins Green Award

Virginia Eagle Distributing Company was recently honored with Shenandoah Valley Technology Council’s Green Award during the 11th annual Tech Nite Awards ceremony hosted at James Madison University.

ech Nite is Shenandoah Valley Technology Council’s annual gathering highlighting Valley technology achievement and innovation in seven categories. On May 3, 2011 more than 250 attendees gathered to recognize and highlight the successes of technology firms, organizations and programs in the region and the entrepreneurs and innovators behind those successes.

The Green Award honors an area technology company, university, individual or organization, who is making an impact on our region through top-notch green practices.  Being green is about more than just recycling paper waste and office equipment. It’s exercising sound business stewardship, improving the way we use our power and computing assets, or better managing workforce productivity through telecommuting and videoconferencing. It’s taking meaningful steps to ensure the health and safety of our employees and customers through energy efficient measures and support of renewable power generation.  It’s being a technology or business model innovator or providing a service that will drive large-scale adoption of leading green solutions.

Virginia Eagle Distributing Company is a locally owned and operated beverage distribution company with warehouse locations in Verona, Charlottesville and Winchester. VEDC distributes a variety of premium beverages including Anheuser Busch products as well as locally brewed beers by Star Hill and Devil’s Backbone. Their environmental philosophy is “Small Steps Lead to Big Change.” They are committed to becoming the industry leader in company performance, environmental stewardship, and social responsibility, and believe that their investments toward real sustainability will stimulate the community for generations to come.

Distribution companies such as VEDC face two issues of financial and environmental concern: the fuel consumed by delivery vehicles and the utilities consumed in keeping the warehouse operating. In an effort to optimize fuel efficiency, VEDC hired a routing consultant to analyze and reconfigure delivery routes and the types of vehicles used along those routes. This review resulted in the reduction of truck mileage by 95,000 miles per year, the reduction of fuel consumption by more than 13,500 gallons per year, and a decrease in fuel costs of more than $37,500 per year.

VEDC has also implemented two environmental sustainability projects: an in-house lighting project and the “6-Pack REUSE Project.” The lighting project optimizes lighting needs while reducing energy usage and expenses through installation of automatic motion sensors to turn off lights in unoccupied rooms and by replacing incandescent bulbs with longer-lasting LED bulbs. As a result of these changes, VEDC’s reduced its annual consumption of electricity by 35,000 kWh at a savings of $2,800.

In October 2010, VEDC implemented their “6-Pack REUSE Project” by providing their on-premise accounts with bags and asking them to put their cardboard containers into the bags. VEDC then picks up the materials and reuses the 6 pack containers and bags. This program has enabled VEDC’s customers to feel good about recycling while reducing their own waste and it has provided VEDC with free repack materials.

VEDC facilitates other ongoing environmental sustainability programs such as single stream waste utilization, providing recycling containers at special events, and sponsoring local Earth Day activities.

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