BiogenGreenfinch’s anaerobic digestion (AD) plant in Shropshire is up and running, and will take in 25,500 tonnes a year of food waste and cow slurry.
The plant, in Edgmond, took 10 months to build. It was officially handed over in August to specialist agricultural centre Harper Adams University College which commissioned it. The company Harper Adams Energy was specifically set up by the university to run the plant.
The AD facility will process local food waste from retailers, manufacturers and caterers, as well as dairy slurry from the university’s 400-strong dairy herd.
It will produce energy for the national grid and university campus, offsetting its carbon emissions by more than three times. Around 23,000 tonnes of digestate produced will be used as fertiliser on the university’s farmland, replacing fossil fuel-based products.
BiogenGreenfinch chief executive Richard Barker said: “This state-of-the-art plant will deliver three great outcomes: a platform to educate both students and the wider community about the benefits of anaerobic digestion, an additional commercial revenue stream for the university and, finally, it will generate significant amounts of renewable energy from low-value cow slurry and from food waste that would most likely go to landfill.”
The two other major partners involved in the build included utilities company E.ON, which provided project support and initial funding, and local contractor Adonis Construction, which carried out the groundwork.