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Food and drink industry making headway with renewable energy

Food and drink industry making headway with renewable energy

Many companies around the world are increasing their efforts to improve their sustainability and eco-friendliness and a new report has indicated that the food and drink processing and manufacturing sector is pushing ahead with this aim.

Findings from SmartestEnergy revealed that companies are now independently generating £80 million worth of renewable energy each year.

Iain Robertson, SmartestEnergy head of generation, said the report highlighted the rapid growth being seen in the independent generation sector.

"For businesses and organisations faced with steep rises in energy costs, investing in their own renewable energy projects can generate significant savings and help them remain competitive," he said.

This also has a knock-on effect as consumers are becoming increasingly interested in the contribution of firms they deal with to limiting climate change.

Within the food and drink industry, there has been a 53 per cent jump in renewable energy projects in the last 12 months, with these installations contributing £32 million to the total amount of renewable energy created.

Photovoltaic initiatives and anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities were two of the most popular ways for food and drink manufacturers and processors to create renewable energy.

Mr Robertson added: "By generating capacity the most popular was AD for which the food manufacturing industry can use by products and which generated 67 per cent of renewable energy capacity.

"The combined strength of a large number of these projects will also play an important role in helping the country meet its climate change targets in the years ahead."

As well as improving the creation of renewable energy, the food and drink industry is also looking to reduce waste levels, which has resulted in the creation of the Every Crumb Counts initiative.

Andrew Kuyk, the director of sustainability at the Food and Drink Federation, recently welcomed the introduction of the scheme and hopes that it will "build on successful work in the UK to tackle the problem of food waste".


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