Working with farmers
We take the food that everyone throws away and use natural processes to turn it into green energy and create nutrients that can be returned to the land.
At Biogen there’s no such thing as ‘waste’. We use the natural process of anaerobic digestion (AD) to firstly turn the food that’s collected from households, supermarkets, restaurants and manufacturers into green energy that can be fed into the national grid.
What’s left from the process is a liquid digestate rich in nitrogen, potash, phosphate and other trace elements that can be stored on site until spreading time and returned to the land as a nutrient rich biofertiliser.
We call this The Closed Loop – what starts on the farm is returned to the farm. And the whole process can begin again.
The agronomic benefits of liquid digestate from the AD process are widely recognised as the nutrients are in a form that enable them to be readily taken up by a crop. Using biofertiliser also reduces the reliance on chemical fertilisers, so digestate is all-round better for the environment.
We work to – and have even helped to develop – the following BSI Standard:
BSI PAS110 –
BSI PAS110 is a voluntary national quality specification for biofertiliser, made available to AD operators throughout England, Wales and Scotland from February 2010, and forms part of the Anaerobic Digestion Quality Protocol. Biogen’s own environmental experts worked with BSI, WRAP and the Renewable Energy Association (REA) to develop the national specification BSI PAS110, on which the protocol is based.
Digestate from a BSI PAS110 accredited AD plant is classified as a product rather than a waste. Digestate spreading is not subject to waste management controls which greatly simplifies the marketing and spreading of the biofertiliser and eliminates waste management control costs.
WRAP organics specialist Nina Sweet said: “The introduction of BSI PAS 110 is a fundamental step in helping to develop sustainable markets for biofertilisers. Making it easier for farmers to use biofertiliser will increase demand within the agricultural community for fertilising and soil conditioning products derived from waste material.”
Biogen’s AD plants in Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire, Hertfordshire, Warwickshire, Caernarfon, Denbighshire and Rhondda Cynon Taf are all certified to the BSI PAS 110 standard.