£32m food waste recycling plant opens in Dagenham

PUBLISHED: 18:04 07 July 2017 | UPDATED: 18:47 07 July 2017

The ReFood anaerobic digestion facility in Dagenham

The ReFood anaerobic digestion facility in Dagenham


This is the latest state-of-the-art facility in the battle to increase recycling – and it’s in Dagenham.

The ReFood anaerobic digestion facility in DagenhamThe ReFood anaerobic digestion facility in Dagenham

The £32 million anareobic digestion plant is the first to be built in London and will act as a showcase of industry-leading food waste recycling technology.

The site will convert inedible food waste from customers in and around London into renewable energy and sustainable biofertiliser.

Operated by ReFood, which is part of the Saria Group, it is capable of processing more than 160,000 tonnes of food waste every year, generating 14 million cubic metres of biogas - enough to power 12,600 homes.

It is the company’s third facility in the UK, following existing sites in Doncaster and the Cheshire town of Widnes, and claims it will help businesses in London to reduce food waste costs by up to 47 per cent.

The ReFood anaerobic digestion facility in DagenhamThe ReFood anaerobic digestion facility in Dagenham

Philip Simpson, commercial director at ReFood, said: “Opening ReFood Dagenham comes as part of a strategic ambition to recycle more than one million tonnes of food waste by the end of 2017 – a milestone that we are on track to achieve.

“Since our first year of production in 2012, national operations have grown by more than 250pc.

“ReFood Dagenham will play an important role in furthering this success, providing an environmentally-friendly waste management solution for customers in London and the surrounding areas.”

The facility was officially opened today by the deputy mayor of London for environment and energy, Shirley Rodrigues.

She said: “We’re committed to helping drive up London’s recycling rates, as well as making London zero carbon by 2050.

“This new facility, the first of its kind in London, is exactly the type of solution we need to help achieve this.

“Not only will it deal with London’s food waste, but it will also produce clean biogas to help cut the carbon emissions of the gas grid.”

Alongside the anaerobic digestion operations, the site will also feature a transfer facility for certain types of animal by-products collected from butchers’ shops in the area.

ReFood Dagenham will also support Transport for London’s clean air action plan by generating biomethane for gas powered vehicles.

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