Cidermaker hopes waste solution will put the fizz into production

By Ed Bedington

- Last updated on GMT

Two-pronged approach: the waste initiative aims to tackle supply issues and help boost sustainability credentials
Two-pronged approach: the waste initiative aims to tackle supply issues and help boost sustainability credentials

Related tags: Cider

A leading cider producer is hoping to kill two birds with one stone by tackling a major supply issue while strengthening its environmental credentials.

Westons Cider has announced it is going to use former waste production produce to create the carbon dioxide it needs to put the fizz into many of its brands, including Stowford Press and Henry Westons.

The company claims to have closed the circle on its CO2 requirements which means it will be able to continue to supply the market if the sector is faced with another carbon dioxide crisis such as the one experienced last summer.

The CO2 is created using the leftover apple pomace from the company’s cider production which sees over 29,500 tonnes of apples pressed, turning the waste product into sustainable carbon dioxide and renewable methane through the process of anaerobic digestion. 

Sustainable solution

Darryl Hinksman, head of business development at Westons Cider said while the business was not caught out by last year’s CO2 crisis, it wanted to look for a sustainable solution: “By effectively generating our own CO2 from our left-over apple pomace, not only are we guaranteeing our own long-term supply, we are also meeting our own sustainability objectives. 

“This will immediately remove 10,000 road miles a year from our supply chain, as we will no longer need to take deliveries of CO2 from further afield.”

The company claims the creation of food and drink grade gas from food byproducts is an industry first and it’s invested in a second CO2 holding tank to accommodate the output from the new production.

Output growth

Westons managing direector Helen Thomas said: “As we enter our 140th​ anniversary year in 2020, we are proud to have been pioneers within the drinks industry since 1880, and it is important to us that we continue that ethos today.

“As a business, we have an ambition to grow our output to 60 million litres a year by 2022, up from our current level of around 47 million litres. But it’s also important to us that we grow the right way.

“By finding a complete circle solution on CO2, in addition to our continued commitment to sourcing the majority of our apples from Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire, we are confident that we are maintaining the high standards that we have always set ourselves across every part of our business.”

Related topics: Cider

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