World Food Day: Turning food waste into energy
This Word Food Day, KES are joining millions around the globe to thank the people who produce, grow and transport our food.
The annual event is now in its 75th year and marks the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations in 1945. This year’s theme is “Grow, nourish, sustain. Together. Our actions are our future”. This means looking towards the future and considering how we can best support the people and processes that help to grow, nourish and sustain our world.
The UK produces the highest amount of food waste in Europe, discarding an estimated 14 million tonnes each year, according to the European Commission. New research by savings site the Voucher Codes found that on average, UK households throw away £355.68 worth of food annually, equating to a startling £9.7 billion across the country.
At present, a lot of this food waste is currently being sent to landfill sites, where it is slowly broken down into powerful greenhouse gases such as methane and carbon dioxide.
However, Anaerobic Digestion (AD) technology is increasingly being utilized around the UK as more businesses and local councils seek to reduce and recycle food waste.
In some councils, food waste containers are provided for each household. The food waste is collected regularly and taken to the anaerobic digestion and composting facilities where it is turned into renewable energy.
Anaerobic digestion facilities break down food waste using microorganisms. The food waste gives off methane gas as it breaks down and this is collected and turned into biogas. Biogas can be used to generate electricity, heat, gas for the National Grid or fuels for the transport industry.
Knight Energy Services work with a number of food waste treatment facilities around the UK who use anaerobic digestion. We provide specialist sampling and compositional analysis services for their input food waste, which means that they can contribute to the circular economy.
Published: 16th September 2020