posted by William R. Stott
Published: October 02, 2009
Mars Petcare opened the doors Sept. 30 to what is not only Arkansas' first sustainable manufacturing facility, but the first sustainable pet food manufacturing facility in the world, according to the company's press release. The $80 million, 305,000 square foot state-of-the art plant will produce Mars' popular line of Cesar Canine Cuisine for small dogs and has received LEED-Gold certification from the United States Green Building Council.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is the nationally-accepted benchmark in the U.S. for designing, constructing and operating green buildings. The Fort Smith facility was awarded "Gold" status for its efforts to recycle water, reduce energy use and protect against erosion and light pollution. Outside of being the first sustainable manufacturing facility in the state, the plant is also the first to earn LEED certification within the Mars Petcare U.S. network.
"Our future is being built on the passion we have for pets and our desire to make the world a better place for them," said the President of Mars Petcare, Luc Mongeau. "This facility demonstrates that commitment, as it allows us to make our remarkable products in a more environmentally responsible way. That's good news for Ft. Smith, for our consumers and for America's pets. I am proud to be a part of this and grateful that Arkansas has been so hospitable to Mars Petcare."
Over the past several years, Mars Petcare U.S. has taken many steps to reduce the impact of its business on the environment. In addition to securing LEED certification, the company has expanded petcare plant recycling systems, modified packaging from paper to woven polypropylene and dramatically reduced solid waste.
"Just a few of the steps we've taken with our Petcare business in the last few years have resulted in the elimination of 4,500 tons of packaging per year and 2,300 tons of carbon dioxide emissions," said Kevin Rabinovitch, Global Sustainability Director, Mars, Incorporated.