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Posted on Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 5:58 a.m.

2 Ann Arbor-area Kroger stores recognized for energy efficiency

By Angela Smith

If you've noticed lights in the food cases flickering on while you grocery shop, it’s not just your imagination.


Kroger on Carpenter Road in Pittsfield Township is being honored for sustainability efforts.

Angela Smith | For

Two Washtenaw County Kroger stores are among 24 in Michigan to be designated with Energy Star certification. The stores are at 1919 Industrial Highway, Ann Arbor; and 3200 Carpenter Road, Pittsfield Township.

The two locations are among 24 Michigan Kroger stores that have received the designation. On a national level, Kroger has reduced energy consumption in its stores by 32 percent since 2000, saving the company more than $100 million in energy costs each year.

Energy updates in the Ann Arbor and Pittsfield stores and other Kroger locations include skylights, LED lighting and a specially designed computer system that monitors and controls energy usage throughout the facilities, according to a news release. Kroger also is saving energy with motion sensors that turn lights on when a customer approaches an aisle and shuts them off when the aisle is empty.

Staff members at the Washtenaw County stores were not available to comment on the changes, but more information about the company's efforts can be found on Kroger's website.

Angela Smith is a freelance reporter for


Top Cat

Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 4:46 p.m.

I just wish their employees were as friendly and helpful as they are at Busch's.

Ann English

Sun, Feb 10, 2013 : 12:37 a.m.

Busch's employees are extra helpful regarding seafood.


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 5:41 p.m.

Agreed! I'd say it's 50/50 but at the kroger on plymouth rd there are some employees long term that just have horrible attitudes and part of the reason I avoid that place ad much ad I can


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 4:44 p.m.

Kudos on the recognition. I wish Kroger (and American grocers in general) would focus more on re-usable shopping bags. I still use several that I brought back from England. They do not, however, fit in the bag areas in the self-checkout and if they are not properly squashed in, they cause a register fault. The register areas seem designed solely for disposable plastic bags. There must be a way to accomadate both types of bags. I would also like to see them give you a bonus point or two for using your own bags. It is a positive incentive and reduces their cost of supplying free plastic bags. You would be surprised how many people use their own bags in the UK. My bags look much cooler too.

Ann English

Sun, Feb 10, 2013 : 12:33 a.m.

I wonder where you shop. Some years ago, Meijer and Kroger always gave bag credits to shoppers who used their own bags. Still today, at self-checkouts at those two store chains, there's a I'm Using My Own Bags spot on the touchscreen for us to touch, and then we're told to put our own bags down on the bagging area and press Done on the touchscreen when finished. Busch's, Hiller's, Whole Foods and Plum Market still give bag credits to shoppers who use their own bags. The cashiers who tend to 4-6 self-checkouts at those stores have to tell the checkout machines that a customer's own bag/bags have been set down in the bagging area, not an item to buy; there's no I'm Using My Own Bags feature on those touchscreens. Demistify, I can see washing cloth bags (Busch's, Walmart, Target and Hiller's offer cloth bags with their store names on them), but other reusable bags are plastic (thicker than free plastic ones, and opaque, such as Whole Foods and Trader Joe's) and others are even INSULATED (Kroger and Aldi offer such bags). Wash an insulated bag like you would an insulated coat? They don't come with washing instructions.


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 7:29 p.m.

A recent study linked re-usable bags to health hazards (e. coli, etc.). In particular, it complained that very few users realize that they need to be laundered regularly. One recommendation was to not use the same bag for chicken and lettuce, for instance, to avoid cross-contamination.


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 4:25 p.m.

Yep, it doesn't hurt their electric bill either! Now, if only they would treat their employees like something more than disposable peasants who aren't supposed to have a life, I'd REALLY be impressed. sign me, a former Kroger drone, um, employee who refuses to work Sundays......


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 8:50 p.m.

The office personnel in the Kroger's at Jackson and Maple can really use some cheering up as they are grumpy most of the time.


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 5:33 p.m.

treat employees different. wrong you got a job. you work for them. work Sundays or look some place else.

Dog Guy

Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 3:48 p.m.

FireKeepers solar project makes continuous power, Homeland Conspiracy, at night the panels are powered by gamblers' lives, hopes, and dreams going up in flames.

Homeland Conspiracy

Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 3:17 p.m.

How about reinvesting some of that into solar panels. Follow FireKeepers lead


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 1:49 p.m.

I noticed the lights going on/off in the freezer cases at the Kroger on Carpenter. I just figured they had the same guy maintaining those that takes care of the can recycle machines.


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 2:07 p.m.

LOL. Cute! I too thought it was due to problems. They should post what's going on.