United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI 30.85, -0.79, -2.50%) is pleased to announce that its York, PA distribution center has been awarded LEED(R) Gold by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI). LEED(R) (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the nation's preeminent program for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.
The 675,000 square foot distribution facility is located at the GreenspringIndustrial Park in York, PA and is the largest facility in the Company's distribution network. Focused on efficient water and energy use as well as resource conservation, some of the steps UNFI took to achieve gold certification included:
Over 60% of building materials sourced from regional suppliers;
Diversion of over 95% of construction waste from local landfills;
Building materials used during construction contained over 35% recycled content;
Installing a cistern to store 20,000 gallons of diverted rainwater to use for facilitation of the center's refrigeration system;
Water use reduction of over 40% using motion-activated sensors and flow controls throughout the building.
"Our associates continue to make significant strides in reducing our impact on the environment by incorporating sustainability in all of our business practices. This LEED(R) certification is another example of UNFI's commitment to utilizing environmentally-friendly design and construction practices," commented Steve Spinner, UNFI's President and Chief Executive Officer.
"UNFI's LEED certification demonstrates tremendous green building leadership," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council. "The urgency of USGBC's mission has challenged the industry to move faster and reach further than ever before, and United Natural Foods serves as a prime example with just how much we can accomplish."
UNFI partnered with ARCO Design/Build, Inc of Atlanta, GA to provide sustainable design and site planning for the York distribution center, which commenced operations in the Fall of 2008. Jake M. Stefan, Vice President at ARCO Design/Build, Inc. commented, "UNFI and its 'Green team' is an incredibly dedicated and driven group that is deeply committed to extending environmentally sustainable initiatives. Their attention to detail and willingness to find the answers are what helped to make the project a success for all involved. UNFI sets an example for the industry by letting their actions speak for them."
"Implementing new technologies both during construction and in building management is just one of the ways that we make sure we're doing the right things for the environment even as we continue to grow as an organization," said Tom Dziki, Vice President of Sustainable Development. "Over 70% of all electronic equipment and appliances in the York facility are ENERGY STAR rated. This and other technologies we've employed enable this facility to reduce lighting power density by more than 25% when compared with a typical building of the same size."
The York distribution center is UNFI's second LEED(R) certified distribution facility. In 2009, UNFI's Ridgefield, WA distribution center was recognized with LEED(R) Gold certification. The Company is also pursuing LEED(R) Silver certification for its new headquarters in Providence, RI and LEED(R) Gold at a new 590,000 square foot distribution center that is being constructed in Lancaster, Texas.
USGBC is the nation's leading evaluator of environmentally sustainable buildings. LEED(R) is an internationally recognized green building certification system and the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.
About United Natural Foods
United Natural Foods, Inc. (http://www.unfi.com/) carries and distributes more than 60,000 products to more than 23,000 customer locations in the United States and Canada. The Company serves a wide variety of retail formats including conventional supermarket chains, natural product superstores, independent retail operators and the food service channel. United Natural Foods, Inc. was ranked by Forbes in 2005 as one of the "Best Managed Companies in America," ranked by Fortune in 2006 - 2010 as one of its "Most Admired Companies," winner of the Supermarket News 2008 Sustainability Excellence Award, and recognized by the Nutrition Business Journal for its 2009 Environment and Sustainability Award.
For more information on United Natural Foods, Inc., visit the Company's website at http://www.unfi.com/.
Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding the Company's business that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties and are based on current expectations and management estimates; actual results may differ materially. The risks and uncertainties which could impact these statements are described in the Company's filings under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including its annual report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on September 30, 2009 and its quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed thereafter, and include, but are not limited to, the Company's ability to successfully deploy its operational initiatives in the Canadian market; the Company's dependence on principal customers; the Company's sensitivity to general economic conditions, including the current economic environment, changes in disposable income levels and consumer spending trends; increased fuel costs; the Company's sensitivity to inflationary pressures; the relatively low margins and economic sensitivity of the Company's business; the ability to identify and successfully complete acquisitions of other natural, organic and specialty food and related product distributors; and management's allocation of capital and the timing of capital expenditures. Any forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and, as such, speak only as of the date made. The Company is not undertaking to update any information in the foregoing reports until the effective date of its future reports required by applicable laws. Any projections of future results of operations are based on a number of assumptions, many of which are outside the Company's control and should not be construed in any manner as a guarantee that such results will in fact occur. These projections are subject to change and could differ materially from final reported results. The Company may from time to time update these publicly announced projections, but it is not obligated to do so.