Packaging company plugs into 178-kilowatt solar array

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The Ada-based packaging company flipped the switch on the 178-kilowatt solar system on Nov. 13. Courtesy M-Industries

M-Industries announced a major step toward energy independence by having 419 solar panels installed on its factory roof.

The Ada-based packaging company, at 6352 E. Fulton St., flipped the switch on the 178-kilowatt solar system on Nov. 13, officially transferring the company’s primary source of energy to solar power for its entire Ada plant and offices.

“We aim to be market leaders in every sense of that term, and sustainability is a high priority for us,” said Jim Weaver, president and CEO of M-Industries. “Along with recent investments in new machinery and employees to grow with increased demand, we’re making a concerted effort to be good stewards of our community and our environment.”

The effort also includes a high-efficiency HVAC system for its Ada plant and new LED lighting and fixtures throughout its facilities.

“Those changes alone reduced energy use by over 75%. Our new solar roof is another major step in our ongoing sustainability initiative,” Weaver said.

M-Industries contracted with AltEnergy to install its solar energy system. AltEnergy is a national company building solar energy systems for commercial and residential customers. The licensed solar contractor has branches in Michigan; Virginia; Maryland; Washington, D.C.; Idaho; and Missouri.

“The solar array at M-Industries will offset 70% of their electrical usage. In December alone, it created over 4,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity. … It’s a huge system and one of which we’re really proud to have been a part,” said Chad Becker, Grand Rapids branch manager of AltEnergy.

M-Industries is a global provider of vented liners for product packaging. Venting allows sealed packages to regulate internal pressure, preventing container failure such as paneling, bloating and leakage caused by e-commerce, active ingredients, rapid altitude and temperature changes or manufacturing methods.

The company serves markets throughout the global packaging industry with offices in the U.S., Mexico and the Netherlands.

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