Yellow Tail goes green: Casella switches on massive multi-million-dollar solar facility in NSW

John Casella, CEO of Casella Family Brands’ at the company’s new solar facility in Yenda, NSW. Photo: Vince Bucello

Casella Family Brands, one of Australia’s largest producers, known for brands such as Yellow Tail, has unveiled a multi-million-dollar solar power facility at its largest production site in Yenda, NSW which will supply roughly 35% of the site’s electricity.

With 8,730 solar panels, the new facility is capable of generating 11.53 GWh of clean electricity per year. This will offset 7,800 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, which is enough to meet the electricity needs of approximately 1,900 Australian homes, or equivalent to planting 325,000 trees.


Casella Family Brands’ new solar facility in Yenda, NSW. Photo: Vince Bucello


The announcement underpins the company’s broader sustainability plan. The new solar facility is the first step in the Casella’s pathway to reducing Net-Zero GHG emissions by 50% by 2030 and achieving 100% by 2050.

Casella’s net-zero pathway

Casella has measured its Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions to outline key reduction areas. The largest source of direct GHG emissions was identified as Scope 2 electricity at the Yenda site which makes up approximately 65% of total Scope 1 and 2 emissions. The site will use all the clean electricity the solar system produces, therefore reducing the company’s environmental impact. The facility features a two-panel tracking system incorporating a smart algorithm that optimises the positioning of the solar panels to allow for maximum sun exposure and energy generation year-round.

It’s not just the winery that will benefit from solar power, the facility will also power Casella Family Brands’ on-site brewery, home of the Australian Beer Company and its brands including Yenda Brewing Co., Son of a Nun and Pressman’s Cider. In addition, Casella Family Brands has invested in a second solar system. This facility will provide clean energy to power the wastewater treatment plant and is capable of generating 890.47 MWh of electricity per year. Consisting of 936 panels it boasts 20-degree fixed tilt mounting selected for maximum generation and will contribute approximately 30% of the facility’s electricity needs.



John Casella at the company’s new solar facility in Yenda, NSW. Photo: credit Vince Bucello


John Casella, founder and managing director of Casella Family Brands, said he was “extremely proud” to unveil the new solar systems.

“As a family-owned business, we’re committed to playing a role in ensuring the resilience of the Australian wine industry for generations to come,” said Casella.

“This includes investing in the regions where we operate, supporting our growers during challenging market conditions and making strategic decisions to ensure our business is set up for long-term success.”

Wine Australia CEO Dr Martin Cole said Casella Family Brand’s new solar farm is another signal of the recognition from Australian grape and wine businesses to act now towards a lower carbon future for all.

“We know that sustainability is an increasingly high priority for consumers, and Casella’s strong actions to reduce their emissions are an extremely positive step towards the sector’s emissions reduction goals,” said Dr Cole. “This is an important investment for Casella and the Riverina region and supports the broader sector’s work to safeguard the future of Australian wine.”

The Net Zero targets are part of Casella Family Brands’ full spectrum, strategic sustainability plan, which considers the company’s impact on the planet, its people and communities, and its products. As well as utilising renewable energy, the company is looking at other ways to improve its energy usage, including the optimisation of wastewater treatment and displacing traditional fuel with biogenic energy and waste from the production process.

“Our Net-Zero targets directly support global climate goals, as well as those of the Australian wine industry, our global customers and distributor partners,” said Casella. “This is also a positive step for our consumers as we know they increasingly care how the products and brands they purchase are made.”

About the solar power systems

Both solar facilities were developed and constructed by engineering, procurement, and construction company Next Generation Electrical. The large system is located 3.5km from the winery site in Yenda NSW. With land holdings across the Riverina, Casella Family Brands was fortunate to have an 11ha plot that was not suitable for agricultural purposes and after a Biodiversity Assessment and Aboriginal Heritage Due Diligence Assessment, it was deemed well suited to host the solar farm development.

Peter Summers, chief executive officer of Next Generation Electrical, said the company was proud to partner with Casella for the project.

“Our commitment to providing renewable and reliable electricity aligns perfectly with Casella Family Brands’ ambition to achieve Net-Zero GHG emissions by 2050. The investment in these two solar farms demonstrates our shared vision for a greener future,” said Summers.

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