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Lactalis Introduces Solar Thermal Power Plant to Support Sustainable Whey Production

Lactalis Introduces Solar Thermal Power Plant to Support Sustainable Whey Production Dairy-based ingredients, solar energy, solar power, sports nutrition, suppliers, supply chain, Sustainability, Tech advances, Whey, whey isolate Food and Beverage Business

The new Lactosol site, unveiled by Lactalis, aims to address sustainability issues in the food and beverage industry by reducing the company’s carbon footprint and will supply heat to its adjacent Verdun site for the next 25 years. This project aligns with the current food and beverage industry trends and food and drink sustainability efforts.

The Verdun site, which is involved in food manufacturing, produces whey powder, obtained by drying whey (lactoserum) that is supplied for use in infant, clinical, and sports nutrition products. “Officially opened in November 2021, in collaboration with renewable thermal energy pioneer Newheat, the drying tower at the Verdun site was initially fed by a gas boiler,” says a report from NutraIngredients. This technology reflects current food processing technology advancements.

The managing director of Lactalis Ingredients, Jean-Luc Bordeau, stated, “After the major renovations of the Verdun site and the inauguration of the new drying tower in 2021, it was essential to continue our transformation by focusing on reducing our energy footprint.”

The new Lactosol solar thermal power plant covers 15,000 square meters and boasts a maximum power output of approximately 13 MWth. Equipped with a 3,000 square meter storage tank, the facility works to ensure a continuous supply of heat even during night and cloudy days. By incorporating solar thermal energy into its operations, Lactalis aims to reduce gas consumption by 6% at the Verdun site, reflecting food and drink industry innovation and food and beverage industry trends.

The project aims to cut CO2 emissions by a reported 2,000 tons per year, equating to 7% of the site’s total emissions. This aligns with current food and drink sustainability efforts and food and drink regulations.

The company’s process for producing whey powders through cheese manufacturing involves skimming and concentrating the byproduct before being spray dried. This reflects current food processing technology advancements in the food and beverage industry.

The project received financial backing from Bordeaux-based Newheat and its partners, reflecting food and drink industry innovation. “Following the successful inauguration, Newheat, having recently announced a fundraising of €30 million, is planning 15 more projects over the next three years, with a total investment of €150 million,” showcasing food distribution trends.

These projects, mainly located in France, are expected to deliver an annual volume of 200 GWh of renewable heat, reflecting food and beverage industry trends and food and drink sustainability.

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