Testa Produce Installs Chicago’s First Freestanding Wind Energy Turbine

CHICAGO – Testa Produce, Inc., Chicago’s premier independent wholesale produce distributor, today took another step toward its goal of gaining U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED® Platinum certification with the installation of an on-site 750-kilowatt wind turbine. The first of its kind in Chicago, the freestanding turbine stands 238 feet tall near the entrance to Testa’s new state-of-the-art distribution center in the Chicago Stockyards Industrial Park, quietly harnessing some of the city’s famous wind and transforming it into clean energy.

The turbine, manufactured by Massachusetts-based Aeronautica Windpower, is expected to supply 950,000 to 1 million kilowatt hours per year of zero-emissions energy. That’s enough energy to supply roughly 35 percent to 40 percent of the 91,000-square-foot facility’s needs. Testa expects a seven- to eight-year return on its investment in the turbine.

“Using wind power is a cornerstone of our commitment to maximizing the sustainability of our operations and to setting a new, significantly higher standard for green operations in our industry,” says Peter Testa, President and CEO of Testa Produce. “We’re proud to have selected a U.S.-built turbine and to be the first company in the city of Chicago to be generating its own wind power with its own freestanding turbine.”

The wind turbine is just one of many advanced sustainability features, including a vegetated roof, solar panels and an extensive rainwater reclamation system, at the new Testa Produce distribution center. The facility was designed by Epstein architects. Summit Design + Build served as the construction manager and WBS Equities served as owner’s project consultant. Construction and permanent financing was provided by MB Bank. All are local Chicago-based concerns.

Celebrating its grand opening on May 10, 2011, Testa’s facility is on track to be the first foodservice distribution center in the nation to earn LEED® Platinum certification by the USGBC, the highest rating available.

For more information and to see photos of Testa’s groundbreaking new building and wind turbine, visit www.testaproduce.com or Testa’s Facebook page, where many pictures of the construction are posted.

Testa Produce: Founded in 1912, Testa Produce, Inc. is Chicago’s premier independent produce distributor. In addition to a broad line of domestic, local, organic, sustainable and imported fresh produce items, the company delivers frozen, canned, and specialty foods to fine restaurants, hotels and institutions in throughout Illinois and much of Wisconsin. Testa is a member of PRO*ACT, the foodservice industry’s largest produce buying and marketing organization, and Legacy Foodservice Alliance.

Source: Testa Produce