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Sunday 24 September 2023 Dublin: 16°C
Enough energy to power 1,700 homes: How Centra's stores are changing for a brighter future
From solar panels to new composting solutions, your local shop could soon look a little different.

Journal Media Studio / YouTube

A DAILY TRIP to the shop is part of life for many of us – whether that’s to grab a sandwich, get a coffee, or pick up something delicious for dinner.

It’s a routine that changes a little every time, depending on what we choose, or who we meet. And the local shops in towns and villages around Ireland are changing too. 

Centra has announced a raft of changes to its stores across the country, as part of a €20million investment into a new Sustainability Fund.

The fund will enable its 483 stores to make simple changes which reduce their energy consumption and impact on the environment. So you can expect to see old lights being swapped out for efficient LED lighting; and solar panels helping to power Centra stores. 

Shane O'Neill / Coalesce New, efficient fridges are among the changes coming to Centra stores Shane O'Neill / Coalesce / Coalesce

It’s projected that the changes will save enough energy to power 1,700 homes. (For context, that’s a town about the size of Carrick-on-Shannon.) Carbon emissions will also be cut by approximately 3,400 tonnes under the new scheme – an impact equivalent to planting 129,000 trees.  

Other innovations include new, highly-efficient fridges with doors to conserve energy; and zero-emission electric delivery vans.

Centra 100% compostable deli packaging is already being rolled out nationwide Centra

Centra stores will also see a number of innovations to reduce packaging waste. These already include 100% compostable shopping bags, coffee cups and lids, and sandwich wrapping paper. 

At the end of 2021, 83% of the retailer’s deli packaging was recyclable, reusable or compostable. By the end of this year, the figure will be 92%, with a commitment to reach a target of 100% by 2025. This is part of a much bigger commitment by Centra that by 2025, 100% of their in-store, own brand and fresh produce packaging will be recyclable, reusable or compostable.

Centra are on a journey to net zero by 2040. From reducing energy use, to innovative sustainable packaging, to creating jobs which support local communities - we’re investing in our shared future. To find out more, visit