Production renewable electricity
Colruyt Group invests heavily in renewable wind and solar energy. Green electricity production far exceeds our total electricity consumption. This allows us to avoid the use of fossil fuels and greenhouse gas emissions and to contribute to the Green Deal's climate neutrality by 2050.
Solar panels on own sites
Colruyt Group has many solar panels on stores and distribution centres under its own management. We continue to expand our capacity, for example with solar panels on every new Colruyt, OKay and Bio-Planet store. We adjust the number of panels to the power needs of the building, because it is more cost-effective to use locally produced energy on site.
Participations in wind energy
On sites with a high energy demand, such as our distribution and production centres, we also produce wind energy, with wind turbines under the management of Virya Energy, the energy holding company we established at the end of 2019 with Korys, the Colruyt family's investment company. With nearly 60% of shares, Colruyt Group is the main shareholder of Virya Energy. Virya Energy is active in the development, financing, construction and operation of renewable energy sources, with a focus on offshore and onshore wind energy. Our investments in Virya Energy make renewable energy accessible to various customers, including Colruyt Group itself.
Virya Energy is 100% owner of several energy producers:
- Belgian company Parkwind is active in offshore wind energy through participations in Belgian wind farms Belwind, Northwind, Nobelwind and Northwester 2. Parkwind has also invested in two German wind farms.
- Eoly Energy produces wind energy on the Belgian mainland.
- Eurowatt is active chiefly in onshore wind energy in France, but also in Poland and Portugal.
- Sanchore is a wind farm in Karnataka (India).
Together with natural gas transmission network operator Fluxys, Virya Energy also develops a power-to-gas-plant called Hyoffwind in Zeebrugge. The plant will convert power from offshore wind farms into green hydrogen on an industrial scale.
Production far exceeds own consumption
A great deal of electricity is produced on behalf of Colruyt Group, partly with our own solar installations and largely via our almost 60% stake in the Virya Energy holding company.
On average, the total power production allocated to Colruyt Group is four times the amount of electricity that we consume as a group. In fact, this total power production is also nearly double our total energy consumption (electricity plus all other forms of energy for heating, transport, etc. combined).
Not a ‘Grey Day’, but a ‘Green Year’
Our investments in wind and solar energy mean we produce considerably more green power than we consume in total. If you look at it like this, our calendar does not have a so-called 'Grey Day', the symbolic day on which a country has used up its entire annual production of renewable energy. By way of comparison: in Belgium, Grey Day fell on 7 February in 2021, while at Colruyt Group it is Green Year all year round!