Supermarket giant TESCO'S new distribution centre in Widnes is to be completely powered by renewable energy generated from food waste, they have announced.
It has joined with with transport company Stobart Croup, and food waste recycling experts the PDM Croup in a move that will see the new shopping centre take its renewable energy from PDM's combined heat and power (CHP) plant that turns 230,000 tonnes of food waste, including Tesco's unwanted, into green renewable heat and electricity. The retailing company is already working with PDM which recycles all Tesco's meat waste at present.
There are no losses in the cable route either as the power is sent via their own cable link which provides renewable energy direct from the CHP plant to the neighbouring distribution centre.
Tesco has leased the new 528,000 sq.ft. distribution centre, which will see its first customers this summer, to provide increased capacity to service its growing network of stores in the north west of England.
Juliette Bishop, Tesco's corporate affairs manager, said:
"This venture is an ideal example of how sustainability is at the very core of the Tesco business and it's great that we can demonstrate that our food waste is directly providing power back into our operations, helping us to reduce waste going to landfill and our carbon footprint."
Stobart and PDM will work together to offer Stobart's customer-base comprised of predominantly food retailers, a recycling service. The agreement would see food waste taken in return journey loads, on Stobart vehicles, to Widnes.
The Widnes plant recycles more than 230,000 tonnes of biomass fuels a year to generate renewable combined heat and power using biomass-to-energy technology.
The fuel is derived from food and other bio-wastes produced from every stage of the food chain, from farm to dinner plate.
PDM Croup director Robert Ratcliffe explained:
"Using green power is becoming an important objective for many businesses, however it's extremely rare that such power can come directly from anywhere other than the National Grid. This type of closed-loop biomass-to-energy relationship is rare in the UK and it's great that we can work together to not only help bolster green credentials, but also enable Tesco to demonstrate that any food waste it generates is essentially helping to power its own supply chain."