Reduce energy consumption, implementing cost-effective energy solutions in 81 businesses in the sectors: crop drying, meat/poultry, dairy, fruit and vegetables
Companies in the agrifood sector have faced high energy costs, which can influence their competitiveness in the market. This project allowed a cooperative energy saving, without any decrease in production capacity for companies and maintaining good socioeconomic and environmental conditions.The project pursued larger savings in the medium term with new affordable intelligent energy solutions, specifically by proving in operational environment the “Collaborative Energy Management Systems”. It has taken advantage of complementarities and synergies among analysed industrial sites with similar characteristics or proximity and used them for the improvement of their joint energy efficiency. For this purpose, 6 pilot industrial clusters in 5 different countries have set up and used for assessing the improvements in overall energy consumptions and its associated costs that could be achieved by using common procedures based on the ISO 50001 standard and supported by specific software developed by the project.The project has delivered a reservoir of specially qualified human resources, fact-based knowledge and techniques, and customized software tools, that are useful for and applicable to other thousands of European companies in the same agro-food subsectors Fruits and Vegetables or dealing with the same industrial processes Conservation and storage of fruit, calibration and packaging.

Resources needed

Direct involvement of equipment suppliers & financial institutions enabling the necessary investments to enhance energy efficiency in agro-food industries. Costs with equipment suppliers (software, equipment) & financial institutions (Eur):2.164,00 euros.

Evidence of success

A benchmarking analysis of their energy consumption based on the Key performance indicators was carried out in each of the 81 involved cooperatives. Self-assessment software has been developed by the project, and so, any interested agro-industry will be able to do its benchmarking analysis too. A collection of 200 Key performance indicators on thermal and electric energy consumption in the four agro-food sectors will be gathered. Savings in energy consumption (kWh): 3 a 5 %.

Difficulties encountered

Identification of industrial clusters to test the solutions;
Implementation of ISO 50.001 standard is time consuming (8 -10 months), and it cost 6.900 euros for Assistance in the implementation and 1.800 euros for Final Audit.

Potential for learning or transfer

Six pilot industrial clusters will be run during a year, in order to prove the advantages of managing collectively their energy by the “Collaborative Management Systems”, improving their energy efficiency and reducing its associated costs. Brokerage events in the 7 countries participating in the project: Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Denmark, Sweden and Greece.

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Main institution
Cooperfrutas- Cooperativa de Produtores Frutas e Produtores Horticolas de Alcobaça, CRL.
Centro (PT), Portugal
Start Date
April 2016
End Date


Agrocluster Ribatejo Please login to contact the author.

Good Practices being followed by

Javier Rosa

Government of la rioja

Lidija Pavic-Rogosic

ODRAZ-Sustainable Community Development