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Global searches for ‘how can I save energy’ rise by 49%: ShelfNow shares how food and beverage SMEs can tackle the energy crisis

 

October 2022: As the UK government expands its Energy Bill Relief Scheme to support businesses with managing rising energy prices, digital wholesaler ShelfNow shares how the small and medium-sized food and beverage sector can effectively tackle the ongoing energy crisis.

ShelfNow also reveals that global searches for ‘how can I save energy’ have risen by 49% compared to this time last year. Many of its partners, including premium mixers and tonics brand Double Dutch and artisan condiments producer Womersley Foods, have sought to mitigate increasing energy costs by setting out a range of plans for the winter from introducing local production plants to raising some product prices later in the year.

Managing heating requirements efficiently 

With a recent study finding that 96% of small businesses in the UK are concerned about rising energy costs, managing heating requirements efficiently is an effective way to keep energy costs low according to ShelfNow. Across both the hospitality and retail sectors heating accounts for a large proportion of all energy usage so operators and retailers alike should consider implementing new initiatives to reduce overall consumption. ShelfNow has seen partners introduce specific training sessions for staff on managing energy use more efficiently. The company also recommends that small operators and retailers consider reducing the use of heating wherever possible. For retailers, stores can have reduced heating during the peak winter months as many customers will be wearing warmer clothing. In hospitality venues, heating can be turned off in empty rooms and outdoor heating use can easily be reduced by a few degrees as guests opt for indoor seating. ShelfNow advises businesses to also consider installing double glazing or insulation as long-term investments as well as researching all suitable utility bill contract options.

Reducing lighting and changing to LED lightbulbs 

The 1 October 2022 saw typical electricity prices rise by 80% as the new Ofgem energy price cap came into effect. Working with hundreds of independent retail and hospitality outlets across the UK, ShelfNow has seen increasing numbers of partners switch to using LED light bulbs in recent months as lighting costs soar this autumn. The company also suggests that hospitality venues cut back on outdoor lighting as fewer customers choose to sit outside in the colder months. ShelfNow recommends that all small to medium-sized businesses consider exploring various smart meter and smart switch options too in order to receive more accurate bills and experience greater convenience when managing light usage. 

Ensuring regular maintenance of refrigeration units and equipment 

With surveyed hospitality and retail businesses reporting the highest levels of extreme concern about energy bills this year, ShelfNow advises all SMEs in the food and beverage sector to carry out regular cleaning and maintenance of refrigeration units and bar and kitchen equipment. Refrigeration is another major source of energy usage for the food and drink industry so ensuring that units and equipment are in optimum condition is a key way to keep energy bills low according to ShelfNow. In addition, ShelfNow shares that businesses should always remember to switch off appliances after closing as well as ensure that units and back-of-house equipment are not left in standby mode.