Clover Stornetta Farms is a dairy with a different business strategy. With a solar facility on its fleet maintenance center, diesel trucks that have been converted to cold plate technology and the use of a Freon-based cooling system instead of ammonia, the farm is well-known for its sustainable business practices.
The farm works with a few dozen family-owned local dairies to process between 60,000 and 75,000 gallons of milk a day.
It is the first dairy in the US to generate electricity and hot water through a hybrid solar technology known as cogeneration. This system was designed and manufactured by Cogenra Solar, a Silicon Valley startup.
A number of businesses and organizations have now installed a Cogenra solar cogeneration system. Clover Stornetta’s peers in the beverage industry have also jumped on this hybrid bandwagon.
The farm , started by Gene Benedetti in 1977, is still looking for ways to lower its water and electricity use and carbon emissions, said proprietor Joanie Benedetti Claussen.