Leader of the Labour party Ed Miliband has opened the UK’s first ReFood anaerobic digestion (AD) plant in Doncaster.
The £12m plant was developed by food recycler PDM in partnership with SARIA Bio-industries. PDM claims the ReFood technology brings a more efficient and industrial-scale AD process to the UK.
Around 45,000 tonnes of food waste produced by local retailers, restaurants, food manufacturers and businesses will be treated at the plant. It will generate 2.8MW of electricity and heat and 40,000 tonnes of fertiliser will be produced to be used by farmers across South Yorkshire.
Miliband, who is also Doncaster North MP, said: “It’s fantastic that I’m able to open a state-of-the-art renewable-energy venture right here in Doncaster. The ReFood plant demonstrates the huge potential that exists for turning food and other household waste into renewable energy, which can then be used to heat and power thousands of homes.”
The new facility has created 35 new jobs and PDM is currently developing a network of ReFood plants across the UK.
PDM operations director Paul Morris commented: “We believe that for the UK to eradicate food waste from landfill, we require a nationwide network of AD plants, which handle the food waste produced in a small radius. Therefore, we are now looking at expanding the ReFood network across the UK to help deliver this crucial infrastructure.”