Whole Foods rounds its green image by committing to solar system energy.
The grocery chain Whole Foods plans to install as many as 100 rooftop solar systems, mainly through the power provider NRG Energy, on nearly a quarter of its stores and distribution centers, the companies announced on March 8th. SolarCity will also provide systems for the grocer, which could expand the rooftop solar program as the installations proceed.
Using solar energy not only fits with the image Whole Foods is trying to project, but will also save the company tons of money, as utility bills will go down. Under pressure from competitors that are bringing specialty and organic food products into the market at much lower prices, Whole Foods places their bet on renewable energy to reduce their costs.
The new NRG chief executive, Mauricio Gutierrez, told investors last month that the company was refocusing on its core business and was in negotiations concerning the fate of the home solar and electric vehicle charging divisions that he expected to complete in the second quarter of this year. NRG will continue to invest in large-scale wind and solar, including rooftop systems for industrial and commercial consumers like Whole Foods.