Arla’s use of biogas pays off with record 60,000 tonnes of CO2 saved annually

DENMARK – Arla Food Ingredients, a subsidiary of Scandinavian dairy products giants Arla Foods has been using biogas to meet some of its energy demands, saving around 60,000 tonnes of CO2 a year.

Since 2019, Arla Foods has received methane from a biogas plant which processes manure from Arla farms, as well as production waste.

To date, green sources such as biogas supply over 30% of the energy needs of the company’s production facilities in Denmark.

Arla Foods Ingredients’ two largest production plants has two 4000 horsepower biogas engines that convert methane into electricity.

 In 2019, CO2 emissions from the two plants totalled 105,000 tonnes, representing a reduction of 62,000 tonnes.

“Arla Foods Ingredients has always been an example of a circular economy because we convert whey, which used to be considered waste, into high-value food and nutrition products,” said Henrik Andersen, CEO at Arla Foods Ingredients.

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He added: “Now we’re taking new steps to reduce our carbon footprint and help protect the environment for future generations. Reducing our use of fossil fuels and investing in greener energy sources such as biogas is an essential element of this ambition.”

While releasing its latest achievement, the leading whey ingredient supplier for food companies said it was also aiming to help infant formula manufacturers cut their greenhouse emissions.

The company said it was it was investing in its dry blend lactose production capacity, in order to help infant formula manufacturers, cut their emissions by as much as 25%.

According to Arla, lactose is usually supplied in a wet blend which has to be heat-treated and spray-dried before packaging, which is a highly energy-intensive process.

By using its dry blend lactose version, Arla estimates that customers will save as high as 24,400 tonnes of CO2, while also increasing their output.

Andersen continued: “Like us, our customers are increasingly focused on becoming more energy-efficient, and the use of dry blend lactose is a great way for formula manufacturers to reduce their emissions.”

These initiatives by the ingredient company are part of the Green Ambition 2050, a sustainability strategy launched by its parent Arla Foods that aims to achieve zero carbon emissions by 2050.

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