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Arla Foods

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Arla Foods – UK largest dairy uses Edina CHP to achieve zero carbon strategy

Arla Foods state-of-the-art milk processing facility at Aylesbury, which has been hailed as the most environmentally-friendly dairy plant in the world, is a key part of the dairy cooperative’s Net Zero 2050 target.

Edina supplied innovative natural gas and biogas fuelled Combined Heat and Power (CHP) technology as part of Arla Food’s long-term growth and environmental strategy to develop the world’s first zero-carbon milk processing facility.

The ambitious £150million project uses cutting edge renewable energy and CHP technology to create a zero-carbon vision. The biogas is created on-site using anaerobic digestion, which utilises production waste from the dairy.

Arla Foods has established a three-company circular economy model involving McDonald’s, and neighbouring cooking oil recycling company Olleco. Food waste from McDonald’s is converted to energy by Olleco and used to power Arla’s site, which in turn produces organic milk for McDonald’s.

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CHP presented an ideal solution for the dairy as the excess heat created as part of the power generation process is captured and reused in processes like pasteurisation, homogenisation and cleaning circuits.

Engineering, IT and facilities services company, NG Bailey, awarded Edina the contract to supply, install and maintain two MWM TCG 2020 V20 gas engines capable of generating an electrical output of 2MW each and 1.9MW thermal output.

The MWM engines are fuelled by natural gas together with biogas, produced from anaerobic digestion.

Edina supplied and designed the natural gas and biogas mixing chamber and integration system, which means that generators can be operated using natural gas or a mixture of natural gas and biogas.

The CHP system is designed to work in Island Mode Operation.  In the event of a power outage on-site, the CHP is configured to hold all essential loads until power is re-established.

Commissioned in September 2013, the dairy is the most technologically advanced and efficient of its kind and achieves zero waste to landfill.  Arla Foods ‘mega-dairy’ sets a new benchmark in environmental standards on a global scale.

Arla Foods announced its ambition to be net carbon zero ‘from cow to consumer’ by 2050 in March 2019. Part of this commitment means that any unavoidable emissions, such as from farms, will be entirely offset elsewhere in the supply chain.

Key benefits

  • Reduce Co2 emissions by 5,200 tonnes per year
  • Achieves zero waste to landfill
  • CHP plant runs on a mixture of natural gas and biogas

Supporting data

Client:
NG Bailey

Location:
Aylesbury, UK

Capacity:
4MWe

Operational:
2014

Manufacturer:
MWM

Packager:
Edina Group

Engine Type:
2 x 2MWe TCG 2020 V12

Primary Fuel:
Biogas Natural Gas

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