Finnish food company planning bioenergy plant

Finnish company Apetit is planning to build a bioenergy plant at its Avena Kantvik rapeseed oil milling plant in Kirkkonummi, Finland.

According to a statement, the planned bioenergy plant would replace the current energy solution that uses non-renewable fuels, in turn significantly reducing the carbon dioxide emissions of the entire Apetit Group.

“In addition to reducing carbon dioxide emissions, the bioenergy plant would also significantly lower Apetit’s current energy costs as oil milling is the Group’s most energy-intensive production process,” says CEO Juha Vanhainen.

Total investment in the plant would be about €3.7 million, according to a statement. The planned heat output for the plant is approximately 4.5MW, which could cover the energy needs of production. Meanwhile, a secondary boiler would be built to enable the use of natural gas.

Apetit is a company specialising in producing food products from vegetables. In addition, it also produces vegetable oils and expeller meals from rapeseed, and trades grain on the international market.

Feedstock for the proposed bioenergy plant would be forest chips, recycled wood and other fibre waste from forests and fields in the area. According to the company, it would also be able to use vegetable oil production side streams, such as rapeseed screenings, vegetable oil sludge and, when possible, the bentonite clay used in the rapeseed oil bleaching process, in energy production.

“The bioenergy plant would enable Apetit to utilise its production side streams. The plant’s energy self-sufficiency would increase and it would no longer be dependent on other used of its side streams. The key goal is for the bioenergy plant to be part of the plant’s circular economy and resources-smart use of raw materials,” explained Vanhainen.

Apetit will apply for the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland’s investment aid that is granted for projects based on renewable energy and will also submit an environmental permit application. A decision on investment will then be made if both applications are accepted.

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