Neighbourly help saves energy consumption of 300 homes

Lamb Weston / Meijer and Wiskerke Onions in full swing with residual heat connection

Lamb Weston / Meijer and Wiskerke Onions are working hard on the construction of a residual heat connection between the two adjacent companies. They are installing heat exchangers, pipe systems and a system for measuring and monitoring energy consumption. This system channels the excess heat from Lamb Weston / Meijer to Wiskerke Onions. This saves the two neighbours the annual energy consumption of 300 households.

‘We're well on schedule to commission the new installation at the end of June 2018’, says Erik de Been, speaking for Lamb Weston / Meijer. 'That's the start of the period when we dry our onion harvest,' adds director Chayenne Wiskerke of Wiskerke Onions. 'That way, we can immediately validate the environmental benefits we achieve with this new installation.'

Green Deal

The residual heat project of the two agricultural companies fits in with the social policy of the Province of Zeeland aimed at promoting the energy transition (reducing the use of fossil fuels). The Province of Zeeland has therefore concluded a Green Deal with the central government, from which the Province of Zeeland has provided a subsidy of almost €800,000 for this project. The project is being facilitated by the Smart Delta Resources platform, an alliance of eleven energy and raw materials-intensive companies in the Southwest Delta region, including Lamb Weston / Meijer.

Heat exchange

After processes such as peeling potatoes with steam peelers and pre-baking potato products, Lamb Weston / Meijer is left with energy that is of too low a quality for other parts of the production process. But the next-door company Wiskerke Onions can make good use of this energy to dry the onion harvest. For that purpose, Lamb Weston / Meijer collects this energy via heat exchangers. These heat up water, which then flows to Wiskerke Onions. Once the heat has been released, the cooled water flows back to these heat exchangers, to be reheated in the production process of Lamb Weston / Meijer.

Savings potential

Once the new installation is put into operation in June 2018, the partners will be able to measure exactly how much energy they are saving. The projected savings potential is approximately 500,000 m3 of natural gas and a reduction in emissions of approximately 875 tonnes of CO2. This saves roughly the annual energy consumption of 300 households. Wiskerke Onions is paying the lion's share of the €1.6 million investment. Wiskerke Onions is also receiving almost €800,000 and Lamb Weston / Meijer about €13,000 in subsidies from the Province of Zeeland.

Made possible by subsidy

Member of the Province of Zeeland's Provincial Executive Ben de Reu describes the partnership between the two international agro-food companies as being unique in the world. 'This subsidy from the Green Deal will make this project cost effective,' says De Reu. 'Without a subsidy, the payback period would be too long and this residual heat system would not be financially viable. In that case the residual heat connection - and all the associated energy savings - would not be achieved. Facilitating project development through the Smart Delta Resources (SDR) platform has been contributed significantly to this.'


About Lamb Weston / Meijer

Lamb Weston® is a global leading brand in high-grade potato products. The products are sold in more than 100 countries all over the world. Lamb Weston / Meijer serves markets in Europe, the Middle East, Africa (EMEA), Brazil and Russia. The company supplies frozen potato products, such as fries, Twisters®, Potato Dippers and Connoisseur Fries to clients in Foodservice, Quick Service and Retail. Lamb Weston / Meijer also supplies dried potato flakes to the food industry. Lamb Weston / Meijer has been an industrial leader for more than 20 years in the field of innovation through the development of inventive products that add convenience to the activities of its buyers and make the food taste better for their customers. From the fields where their potatoes are grown to proactive partnerships with customers, Lamb Weston / Meijer has a clear sustainability ambition and always sets the bar higher. The company is headquartered in Kruiningen (the Netherlands) and operates six factories: four in the Netherlands, one in the United Kingdom and one in Austria. Lamb Weston / Meijer employs around 1,400 people.

About Wiskerke Onions

Wiskerke Onions is an important player in the processing and export of onions. The company focuses entirely on getting the highest quality onions via the customers to the consumer's plate. Only the best onions, shallots and garlic make it through the strict quality controls of Wiskerke Onions. A deep-rooted passion for onions, a strong commercial spirit and innovative automation solutions are the keys to the success of Wiskerke Onions. Wiskerke Onions has been in business for 4 generations, and operates in 110 countries. The company employs 85 people.

About the Province of Zeeland and Smart Delta Resources

The project is a perfect match with the Zeeland Provincial Executive’s policy, as expressed in the 2017-2021 Economic Agenda, and fits the current social task of achieving a circular economy and energy transition. The project is an initiative of the platform Smart Delta Resources (SDR), facilitated by the development company Impuls Zeeland N.V., where energy-intensive companies in the Delta region cooperate to exchange energy and raw materials in order to improve their competitive position. SDR charts the material and energy flows of companies and develops business cases for exchanging energy and material flows.