Bakkafrost’s new biogas plant utilizes fish farming waste, scoops award

Published on
October 10, 2019

The Faroe Islands’ first biogas plant, being constructed by salmon farmer Bakkafrost, is due to commence operations early next year.

Named FÖRKA P/F, which means “to move” or “to change” in Faroese, the new 12,000-square-meter plant represents Bakkafrost’s largest investment into impactful circular solutions to date. It will use waste products from its operations and other fish farms, as well as manure from dairy farming, to produce renewable energy and liquid fertilizer for local agriculture.

When in operation, FÖRKA will have the capacity to annually convert 90-100,000 metric tons (MT) of waste, providing enough renewable heat for 10 percent and electricity for 2 percent of homes in the Faroes.

Bakkafrost COO Høgni Dahl Jakobsen told SeafoodSource that the plant will solve some important practical problems, particularly the sustainable disposal of the increased biological waste generated by the company’s strategy to increase smolt size. It introduced this strategy to reduce the salmon grow-out stage at sea and also the biological risks associated with the sector.

“We think this a perfect solution. We will be able to utilize all of the organic waste that we have, we will protect the fjords by reducing the CO2 emissions significantly – approximately 11,000 MT per year – at the same time as solving the manure problem that the dairy farmers in the Faroes have,” he said. “All fertilizers used in the Faroe Islands are normally imported, but by doing this we will also be producing enriched fertilizer as a by-product from the biogas plant. It ticks all of the boxes.”

Jakobsen added, “We are not doing this to create a cash cow. This is to solve a problem; it’s an investment in the environment.” 

Bakkafrost has already received an award for the plant, last month scooping the Faroese Business Initiative 2019 prize, in recognition of the strong positive environmental, social, and economic impact the initiative will have in the Faroe Islands.

Image courtesy of Bakkafrost

Contributing Editor reporting from London, UK

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