Jun 26, 2013 • By

General Mills products traveling ‘green’

Some General Mills products are now traveling “green.”

Starting this month, General Mills began using 16 new semi-trucks – powered by compressed natural gas – to transport some General Mills products to our retail customers in the Midwest.

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Compressed natural gas is the same type of fuel used in gas stoves and furnaces. And it’s proving to be a sustainable and cost-effective technology used in the trucking industry.

The trucks are expected to travel 1 million miles per year and reduce diesel consumption by 160,000 gallons annually.

“This is the latest initiative that supports the General Mills sustainability goal of reducing diesel usage by 35 percent by 2015,” says Doug Watne, director of Transportation Operations at General Mills. “Moreover, carbon dioxide emissions will be reduced by almost 700 tons.”

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General Mills spent much of the past year researching the use of alternative fuel, and has collaborated with Minnesota-based Dart Transit Company on this pilot program.

Doug tells us more in this video:

Since fiscal 2009, General Mills has reduced its transportation fuel usage rate (fuel used to transport a metric ton of product) by 17 percent. We have also increased usage of trailers on trains, and relying on new software to load trailers more efficiently.

In Europe, we have consolidated our heavier canned Green Giant vegetables produced in France with our lighter Nature Valley bars and Old El Paso Mexican meal kits made in Spain, and have been able to pack sea-going containers more efficiently for transport to the UK and Ireland, which saves 150,000 road miles annually.

To read more about the cutting-edge technology behind this green fleet, check out this blog post from Dart.

Also, for more information about the General Mills goal to reduce transportation fuel use, check out our recently released 2013 Global Responsibility Report.