Manufacturing Energy Efficiency: CP Kelco

CP Kelco may not be a household name in San Diego, but it’s very likely that in your daily life, you have used or eaten products that are made with ingredients produced by the local company. CP Kelco is a leading manufacturer of nature-based hydrocolloids – thickening and gelling agents that are widely used in household and industrial products, such as lotion, toothpaste, ice cream and glue.

That’s not the only thing worth knowing about CP Kelco. This 88-year-old company was recently recognized as a 2017 SDG&E Energy Showcase winner for adopting innovative energy and water efficiency measures. There is a strong nexus between water and energy efficiency; the two often go hand in hand.

“Sustainability is one of the core values of the company. As one of the oldest manufacturing companies in San Diego, that’s a responsibility we take very seriously and are proud of,” said CP Kelco Operations Manager Sharath Golla.

Saving energy, saving water

At its facility in Barrio Logan, CP Kelco uses natural gas to run turbines to produce electricity via its co-generators. About 30 percent of the steam generated is made from waste heat from the co-generators. The facility has been able to achieve 10-20 percent in energy savings by adopting ideas suggested by employees and taking advantage of business support programs provided by SDG&E. One of our account executives helped the company secure rebates for energy-efficient equipment. 

Water is a major part of CP Kelco’s operations in Barrio Logan. Last year, the company was able to save eight million gallons of water through recycling and other reduction efforts. CP Kelco installed an advanced water treatment system that recycles reverse osmosis reject water to fill its cooling towers. The cooling water is then used for cleaning purposes. 

Watch this short video to learn more about how CP Kelco has been innovating to save water and energy.

This article is part of a series highlighting SDG&E’s 2017 Energy Champions. Click here to watch short video profiles showcasing how we’re working together to build healthier communities.