Sun Belle Inc. has added a solar energy array to the roof of its Jessup, Md., facility. ( Courtesy Sun Belle Inc. )

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Sun Belle Inc. has installed a roof-top solar energy system at its Maryland distribution center, with the capacity to offset more than 35% of its energy needs.

The 450 kW solar array system at the 64,000-square-foot Jessup, Md., center covers 33,500 square feet of the roof area, generating enough energy to power 48 homes, according to a news release. It was installed by Aurora Energy Inc., Columbia, Md.

“Due to our constant refrigeration demands, we sought a solution that would offset rising utility costs and make a positive environmental impact,” Janice Honigberg, president of Sun Belle Inc., said in the release. “Aurora Energy offered a perfect solution for us with the added benefit of being able to utilize land adjacent to our facility as a pollinator meadow.”

Another solar array project to be installed this fall on land adjacent to the facility on 12,680 square feet will include a pollinator meadow.

“Sun Belle’s investment in rooftop solar capitalizes an underutilized asset — the rooftop of their facility,” Fariborz Majhouiri, Aurora Energy CEO, said in the release. “They have converted this warehouse roof space to a small power plant that can produce clean energy while saving money. It’s a win-win scenario.” 

The company, based in Washington, D.C., has also warehouses in Miami, Schiller Park, Ill., and Oxnard, Calif. It plans to open another warehouse in Laredo, Texas, in September.

Sun Belle markets berries, greenhouse vegetables and specialty produce under the Sun Belle and Green Belle (organic) brands.

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