A feed mill in Dorset is set to become the first in the country to be powered completely by renewable energy when a new £3.3m biogas plant goes live next month.
Eco Sustainable Solutions will own and manage the Weltec anaerobic digester, which will generate 498kWh of power for the Dorchester Feed Mill, which is owned by farmer co-op Mole Valley Farmers.
The plant, built on a 2.5-acre site at a former pig unit, will use around 15,000t of food waste a year from local council collections and commercial sources, alongside 6,000t of pig slurry, sourced from a single neighbouring farm via a pipeline.
Digestate from the plant will be sold back to two local farms under a long-term agreement and the site is starting the PAS110 approval process for digestate.
In addition to the AD plant, the feed mill will also be supplied with electricity from a 250kW solar PV installation that went live on 1 March this year.
"Mole Valley Farmers has long since recognised the opportunities that renewable energy production affords farmers, the rural economy and the environment and producing animal feed using renewable technology is central to our vision for the future of farming," said MVF's operations manager David Pope.