Part One – Energy use
The rapidly-changing situation with storage costs requires every manager to devote some time with a highly critical eye to the matter of cost control – more so than ever before. Burying one’s head in the sand is a dangerous option; costs are rising so markedly that no responsible operator can fail to recognise that getting it wrong could be a disastrous situation for a potato enterprise.
So how can you arrive at an accurate cost for operating a store?
There are many different parts to that calculation. In this first of two articles, we will focus on assessing and regulating energy use. In May, we will consider capital expenditure and other operating costs.
Here are some of the factors to consider when trying to control energy consumption and cost. It is a much more far-reaching list than it perhaps first appears:
· Store control
· Calibration of sensors
· Use of inverters/speed control
· Fan performance
· Fridge performance including defrost
· Air leakage
· Box layout and associated airflow
· Use of renewables
· Tariff management
First and foremost, a meter is key to allow you to record information to help build a full picture of what the store is costing you. Perhaps one of the most common challenges we find is knowing just how much electricity the store is actually using. Fitting some dedicated metering can be extremely worthwhile as it immediately cuts out any guesswork on consumption…