Danone New Zealand commissions biomass boiler for spray drying plant
Combined with the use of 100% renewable electricity at the plant, CO2 emissions
are expected to be reduced by 95%, helping underpin Danone’s ambition to become a net-zero carbon company by 2050.
Danone’s Balclutha spray drying plant processes fresh milk sourced from twenty local farms into powder that is used as the base for production of its baby formula brands including Aptamil and Karicare.
Boilers play a central role in spray drying – the process of converting milk into a dry powder through the application of heat – with around 85% of the entire plant’s energy consumption coming from steam production.
Unlike gas or coal-powered fossil fuel boilers in New Zealand, Danone’s biomass boiler is powered by locally-sourced wood residues, which the company said are from sustainably-managed forests.
The biomass project forms part of Danone’s landmark global Re-Fuel energy excellence program, with an ambition to transition to competitive, resilient and renewable sources of energy.
“This is a significant investment for Danone and one that underscores our belief that in order to produce healthy food, we must have a healthy planet,” said Danone’s New Zealand operations director, Steve Donnelly. “This has not been a simple project for us, especially with the impact of COVID, however it is symbolic of the action required for business to contribute in an impactful way in order to realise a low-emissions, climate resilient future for New Zealand.”