There’s Money Hiding in Your Grocery Store, and We Can Help You Find It

Taper makes complex funding opportunities simple to access and process, especially for independent grocers.

To operate a thriving business, all grocery stores big and small must keep their HVAC, refrigeration, and lighting systems running efficiently and in good working condition. This is becoming more difficult every day. Maintenance and energy costs are rising, and new regulations require food retailers to make their refrigeration systems more sustainable over the next several years.

Small, independent retailers are particularly challenged to navigate these pressures. Unlike large supermarket chains, small retailers have limited staff to track technology and regulatory developments as well as limited budgets to fund equipment upgrades. Because independent retailers operate a small number of stores, upgrades are usually unable to take advantage of economies of scale.

Refrigerated case doors in grocery store.
New regulations from the U.S. EPA require food retailers to make their refrigeration systems more sustainable in the coming years.

Lots of funding is available, but it’s not easy to get.

The good news is that there are numerous, lucrative funding opportunities that improve the business case for the upgrades, enabling independent retailers to meet regulatory requirements and stay competitive. However, securing these financial incentives is not easy. Funding mechanisms and application processes are more complicated today. Incentives come from a hodgepodge of different utility, state, federal, and other sources. Different programs fund different types of upgrades and have different eligibility requirements.

Some grocers tell us that it feels like they have numerous pressures coming from different directions and that they don’t know where to start. Such grocers don’t have time to tackle funding complexities on their own since they’re focused on operating stores and keeping the lights on.

LED lighting upgrade in grocery store.
There are incentives available for grocers to implement energy efficiency measures, such as installing LED lighting.

Taper is here to help. We’re a B-Corp subsidiary run by an environmental nonprofit organization, Ecology Action. We have worked with community-based grocers in California, Oregon, and Washington for decades to secure incentives and implement system upgrades. We have a deep understanding of the funding ecosystem as well as the operational challenges that food retailers face. We know how to make funding applications shine and how to submit them on time.

We make the incentives process easy for independent retailers. Whether a retailer operates one store or ten, we can look at the entire portfolio of buildings and systems and identify the timeliest upgrades along with the best technologies and funding sources to enable them. We go beyond utility incentives to consider funding from state, federal, and other sources. Once we secure incentives, we work with our partners—suppliers, installers, and others—to design and implement a comprehensive work plan that is affordable, high quality, and in compliance with regulations.

Taper has secured over $7 million in incentives for grocery stores.

Often, we find a “sweet spot” where retailers maximize benefits through holistic solutions that upgrade multiple systems in parallel and leverage several financial incentives. For retailers that have preferred service contractors, we can educate them on new technologies, provide technical support, and guide the installation project.

Taper is a trusted partner on the upgrade journey.

The cost and regulatory pressures on food retailers are not going away. If grocers don’t act now to upgrade their facilities, costs are going to increase, and such businesses will eventually be forced into action.

Alternatively, food retailers can reach out to us today to explore the funding sources most suitable for their circumstances. Financial incentives present a huge opportunity to complete system upgrades in a planned, affordable, and holistic manner. We can help figure out the best starting point and a detailed plan all the way to the finish line. Get started by checking out currently available incentives and scheduling time with our trusted advisors.