Danish and UK feed ingredient suppliers to switch to renewable energy inputs

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/Boonyachoat
© GettyImages/Boonyachoat

Related tags wind biogas solar energy renewable energy

UK organic feed maker, Hi Peak, and Danish probiotics producer, Chr. Hansen, have both just announced a migration to renewable energy sources to power their production plants.

This week also saw enzyme and microbial solutions provider, Novozymes, say it will monitor emissions across the value chain and work with its suppliers to reduce emissions from the raw materials that it purchases. Like Chr. Hansen, its headquarters are in Denmark as well.

'It is high time that...'

First off, UK based, organic feed manufacturer, Hi Peak, reported last week that it is set to be powered exclusively by renewable energy by the end of this year. 

L-R Rob Daykin Ruminant Commercial Manager at Hi Peak and Mark McGuire Director of Procurement at Devenish
Rob Daykin, ruminant commercial manager, Hi Peak and Mark McGuire, procurement director, Devenish Group

For the next three years, the Sheffield-based firm, which is the UK and Ireland’s largest 100% organic manufacturer of feeds, blends, minerals and specialty products, will move towards 100% Renewable Energy Guarantee of Origin (REGO) certified sources for its electricity supply.

Part of the Devenish Group, Hi Peak made the move as part of a major sustainability program to minimize its impact on the environment.

Mark McGuire, director of procurement, Devenish Group, told us:

“From December 2019, Hi Peak will be powered exclusively by renewable energy. This will be from a number of different sources, including wind, solar and biomass. Our move to renewable energy is the first part of ongoing improvements we are seeking to make across the business in terms of sustainability, environmental impact and carbon footprint.”

Competitively-priced switch for Chr. Hansen

Further north, and a new 10-year agreement, announced this week, enables Chr. Hansen Denmark to switch 100% to green power from two brand new solar parks.

It has entered into a deal with Danish company, Better Energy, signing off on a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), to ensure that all of Chr. Hansen Denmark’s annual electricity usage is covered by renewable energy. 

Chr. Hansen said it has decided to commit to this agreement to enable its bacteria and natural colors to have a green footprint, both externally with its customers and on its home turf where some of its largest production sites are located. 

Will it have to pay more for its electricity as a result of going green, though? 

No, we won’t. The new deal is priced competitively to what we already had​,” said a spokesperson. 

“With this project, we have the chance to both support the green transition within the Danish power sector and get a stable price [over the next 10 years], and we see this as a win-win situation,”​ she told FeedNavigator.

Better Energy will establish and manage the two new solar parks from where Chr. Hansen will be sourcing its energy; they will only be finished, however, in April 2020. 

Energy Denmark will be responsible for creating a balance between consumption and production of electricity and handling the difference that will always exist when the sun doesn’t shine. In that way, Chr. Hansen said its energy supply will be secured with power production from a mix of several other renewable sources like wind and biogas. 

Climate action 

In an address yesterday [September 23] at the UN Climate Action Summit, Novozymes CEO, Peder Holk Nielsen, said that the company is among the first in the world to commit to keeping the temperature rise due to climate change below 1.5 degrees Celsius and one of the first to have that commitment validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).

“The heat is on – literally. To tackle climate change head-on, we need to limit global warming increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius and Novozymes is committed to that by providing the world with low-carbon, biological solutions while also reducing our own emissions,”​ Peder Holk Nielsen said. “Secretary-General Guterres has asked companies to come up with plans – not just speeches."

The enzymes and probiotics producer said it has introduced initiatives to cut down emissions at what is the world’s largest enzyme manufacturing facility in Kalundborg, Denmark. Recently, its partner, Ørsted, inaugurated a biogas plant that uses biomass residues from Novozymes’ production to generate power – with a promise to slash annual carbon emissions by an estimated 17,000 metric tons.

The company acknowledged that its impact goes beyond its production alone, and that it must account for emissions that occur outside its boundaries. In that respect, and as part of the 1.5-degree commitment, Novozymes said it will monitor emissions across the value chain and work with its suppliers to reduce emissions from the raw materials that it purchases.

“This is not about Novozymes and one company only; we want to inspire others across our value chain to follow suit – and transparency is key,”​ continued the CEO. “We were one of the very first companies to document the carbon footprints of our products and demonstrate how biological solutions can enable customers across multiple industries and geographies to reduce emissions – and this is where we will continue to focus, enabling better business with biology."

Transportation accounts for about 25% of total energy-related global CO2 emissions – and to limit global warming increase to 1.5 degree Celsius, the transport sector will also need to reduce emissions at a rapid pace, noted the company. Novozymes said it has set a target to help the transport sector save 60 million tons of CO2 emissions in 2022 by enabling the production of bio-based, low-carbon fuels.

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