Barry Callebaut

Address Bouwstraat 1, Lokeren

Surface 67.000m²

Site 12ha

Project description

The Chocolate Box is the world’s largest chocolate warehouse and will be the logistics hub for all the packaged chocolate products and decorations Barry Callebaut produces in its chocolate factories in Wieze and Halle.

Budget Confidential

Project period 2019 – 2022

Delivery phase 2022

Final client Barry Callebaut

Team AAVO, Istema, WDP, Alheembouw

BREEAM Assessor and AP

BREEAM is an internationally recognised sustainability certification system whereby a building/site is tested against strict sustainability requirements around specific themes; namely energy, health, ecology, materials, waste, water, transport, pollution and management. Five different certification levels can be achieved: Pass, Good, Very Good, Excellent and Outstanding.
With this new Global Distribution Centre for Callebaut, WDP and Barry Callebaut are going for the highest score, namely Outstanding. This will be the first logistics building of more than 50000 m² to be awarded this certificate in Belgium.



In order to achieve this sustainability objective, various aspects are used. SuReal is responsible for the follow-up of these objectives and for guiding the project managers of the various parties involved.


The first important aspect is “Fossil Free” and the energy neutrality of the buildings. To this end, the initial focus was on the most energy-efficient buildings possible (highly insulated and airtight buildings, LED lighting, energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, use of environmentally friendly coolants, energy-efficient equipment, etc.). To cover the remaining energy demand, a BTES field is used to extract heat and cold from the ground. In addition, the roofs of the high-rise and low-rise buildings are fitted with solar panels, good for annual energy production of 3950MWh. Charging points are also provided for cars and lorries, with the possibility of expanding so that in time all transport can be electric.

Another aspect is the landscape for which an ecologist was appointed. All water is infiltrated, recovered and buffered on the site for as long as possible. Several infiltration basins will be created and a mix of local vegetation will be used to enhance the local fauna and flora, with the butterfly as the ambassador species. Their presence brings along numerous other insects and animal species.



For this reason, nesting boxes and bat boxes will also be provided in trees and on facades, as well as insect shelters. Energy-efficient and bat-friendly lighting will be chosen as exterior lighting, working by means of movement sensors in such a way that fauna and flora are disturbed as little as possible by the lighting.


A third aspect is comfort and well-being at work. From the design phase of the project, various daylight studies and thermal comfort studies were carried out using detailed simulation models to optimise the design. The impact of the noise produced by the activities on the environment and the acoustic comfort of the employees were also investigated by means of an extensive acoustic study and a 3D computer model, and adjusted where necessary. As a result, the future noise from the activities on the site can be limited to 45dB(a).

SuReal’s role



Sustainability studies

  • Analysis of thermal and daylight comfort
  • Analysis of the materials with Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)
  • Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) analysis
  • Feasibility studies renewable energy