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06 September 2013

NTUC FairPrice participates in pilot BCA Green Mark Portfolio Programme

-FairPrice commits to achieving Green Mark certifications for at least 20 stores under this programme

NTUC FairPrice has been named the pioneer partner by the Building & Construction Authority (BCA) for its new Green Mark Portfolio Programme. It is a national initiative aimed at promoting green practices through collaborative partnerships with building owners and tenants to improve sustainability outcomes in fit-outs and daily operations. The programme was launched by Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, this morning at the official opening of FairPrice Finest @ Zhongshan Park. This supermarket was from the onset designed to be green and environmentally friendly and is the first and only supermarket to have received the Platinum Award, the highest rating, under the BCA Green Mark for Supermarkets Scheme. It is expected to achieve potential energy savings of up to 30 percent per year.

The BCA Green Mark Portfolio Programme is designed to steer organisations towards setting corporate green policies and practices upfront. It allows tenants to simplify the Green Mark certification process for multiple spaces of a similar type, achieving certification faster and at a lower cost compared to individual project certification. The Programme, thus, provides tenants with economies of scale by taking advantage of the uniformity in building or interior design and construction, as well as operations and management. Companies need to certify at least 20 projects within three years to participate in the Green Mark Portfolio Programme and it is applicable for tenant-centric Green Mark schemes, namely, for supermarkets, retail, restaurants and office interior projects.

Dr John Keung, Chief Executive Officer, Building & Construction Authority, said, "Going green not only benefits the environment, but also adds value to businesses. By adopting energy efficient elements in the workplace, firms can reduce costs through energy savings, create productive workplaces, as well as build competitive advantage. By streamlining the certification process across similar projects, the Green Mark Portfolio Programme serves to create momentum for businesses to go one step further in their green journey."

As a pioneer partner of the Green Mark Portfolio Programme, FairPrice commits to achieve Green Mark certification for at least 20 stores in the next three years. In addition, FairPrice also commits to attain at least a Green Mark Gold Rating for no less than half of these stores over the same period.

Mr Seah Kian Peng, Chief Executive Officer, NTUC FairPrice, said, "As a socially responsible retailer and an industry leader, FairPrice has always recognised the importance of environmental sustainability. At this FairPrice Finest store at Zhongshan Park, the installation of LED lighting will achieve energy savings of 130,000 kilowatt-hours per annum compared to normal lighting. Together with other green features like motion detectors, lighting scheduling system and energy-efficient refrigeration showcases, the store is projected to use about 30 percent less energy compared to the baseline energy usage of a typical supermarket in Singapore. The green efforts in this store alone will result in energy savings equivalent to the amount of electricity consumed by about 200 average 3-room HDB flats per annum."

FairPrice was the first supermarket to launch an eco-friendly supermarket in City Square Mall which showcased the latest eco-friendly solutions in grocery retailing in December 2009. Currently, the retailer has 46 stores which have been renovated to be eco-friendly with at least five green features which include LED lights, zonal lighting controls, energy-efficient refrigeration fans and motors, refrigeration energy savings system and motion sensors. Three stores - FairPrice Finest @ Zhongshan, FairPrice Finest @ My Village and FairPrice @ Ang Mo Kio Block 712 - have since been awarded BCA's Green Mark Awards in the Supermarket Category.

Getting certified under the Green Mark Portfolio Programme

Certification for projects under the Green Mark Portfolio Programme comes in two phases - the Prototype Pre-certification and Project Certification. To be eligible for pre-certification, the conceptual framework representing the portfolio of projects with similar design elements and features must include a minimum of all Green Mark pre-requisites and sufficient points to achieve Green Mark certification at the Certified level or higher. Upon achieving the Prototype Pre-certification, the portfolio will enter into project certification where each individual project will be assessed and certified based on the prototype specific features of the individual project that are not included in the prototype.

The Portfolio programme is targeted at two groups of users mainly:

  • Organisations which have multiple units/outlets in different locations such as banks and offices, supermarket operators, restaurant chains, and retailers; or
  • Multiple tenants within a single building using shared and common building systems and facilities such as the air-conditioning system, lighting design and fittings, or other applicable common facilities. Some examples are multiple offices within a building or multiple retail shops within a shopping mall. 

Green Features at FairPrice Finest @ Zhongshan Park

FairPrice Finest @ Zhongshan Park is the first and only supermarket to be awarded the BCA Green Mark Platinum award for supermarkets in Singapore.

The key green features at FairPrice Finest @ Zhongshan Park include:

  • CO2 refrigeration system that reduces carbon footprint by 30% and conserves energy for freezers. This system also has Zero Ozone Depletion Potential and Low Global Warming Potential. 
  • Energy-efficient refrigeration showcases that saves more than 20% energy compared to open display cases. More than 75% of the centrally controlled refrigeration showcases are fitted with doors and electronic expansion valves, anti-sweat control and electronically commutated fans are also installed. 
  • Integrated lighting management with LED lighting that consumes less energy and auto zonal lighting controls and occupancy sensors that help conserve energy.
  • Energy management system that enables remote monitoring of energy consumption patterns from headquarters.
  • Water efficient fittings to reduce water consumption and private water meters to monitor consumption and detect leakages. 
  • "Bring Your Own Bag" (BYOB) Checkout Counter for customers who bring their own shopping bags and FairPrice Green Rewards Scheme for BYOB customers at every checkout. 
  • Eco-Corner and recycling bins to encourage customers to support FairPrice's energy conservation efforts. 

Offering the best of both worlds

The first FairPrice Finest store was set up in 2007 in view of customers' changing lifestyles and to bring the fine life closer to shoppers at fair prices. It provides the best of both worlds, where customers can enjoy a greater range of cosmopolitan products such as organic and deli foods at competitive prices and daily groceries available at other FairPrice supermarkets at the same price.

Commenting at the store launch of FairPrice Finest @ Zhongshan Park, Mr Seah added, "This is our 14th FairPrice Finest store and we are excited to bring this store format, which have competitively priced cosmopolitan products and daily essentials that are similarly priced to our FairPrice stores, even more accessible to more shoppers in the vicinity."

FairPrice Finest stores have become increasingly popular with shoppers and have since increased its footprint to 14 stores situated in HDB heartlands, private residential estates and in the town area.

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