United Biscuits pioneers alternative fuel from waste cooking oil
United Biscuits (UB), the leading international manufacturer of biscuits and cakes, has developed an industry leading sustainability initiative through the use of waste cooking oil to power 12 of its lorry fleet. Estimated to save up to 97 per cent in CO2 emissions, compared to traditional diesel fuel, the pioneering project forms part of the company’s multi-award winning ‘Fewer and Friendlier Miles’ campaign. Since the launch of the campaign in 2006, it has removed 20 million truck miles from UK roads.
The waste vegetable oil, a by-product from snacks manufacturing, is processed into Ultra Biofuel and the adapted lorry fleet are set to recycle 500 tonnes of waste cooking oil a year. The industry first project is the result of a partnership with Convert2Green (formerly Biomotive Fuels) to develop an engine modification across UB’s lorry fleet which has allowed its trucks to be 100 per cent fuelled by waste oils.
The partnership, which began in 2011 following two years of initial investigations by UB into alternative fuels, has also resulted in the use of new biofuel vehicle management systems from German company Bioltec in 10 of its Mercedes tractor units currently being used nationwide. As part of the project, a 30,000-litre heated re-fuelling station has been installed at UB’s Ashby depot.
UB now plans to roll out the project further across the business and has recently converted two of its brand new Euro VI vehicles to run on Ultra Biofuel.
The move to Ultra Biofuel is the latest in a series of commitments by the leading food manufacturer to reduce carbon emissions across its logistics operations, which have already seen a reduction of 40 per cent since 2006. The project will sit alongside other sustainability initiatives by UB including the recent introduction of 62 longer trailers, which are projected to save 450,000 truck miles on UK roads each year.
Rob Wright, Head of Distribution, United Biscuits commented: “The benefits of recycling waste cooking oil from our food factories into Ultra Biofuel is another step along United Biscuits’ green journey, which has already seen us make significant gains in reducing carbon emissions across our logistics business.
“It is estimated the UK generates 250 million litres of waste oils a year, and we are delighted to be able to demonstrate a sustainable use for this waste material with potential to deliver significant CO2 savings from transport within the UK.”
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About United Biscuits:
- UB is the leading manufacturer and marketer of biscuits in the UK and second largest in the Netherlands, France, Belgium and Ireland.
- UB manufactures and markets a wide range of products in the UK and Continental Europe that are household names in their respective markets. Branded products accounted for approaching 90% of sales in 2012.
- Among UB’s popular brand names are McVitie’s, Penguin, go ahead!, McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes, Jacob’s, Jacob’s Cream Crackers, Twiglets, Mini Cheddars and Carr’s in the UK, and BN, Delacre, Verkade and Sultana in Continental Europe.
- UB’s branded biscuits were purchased by 90% of UK households in 2012.
- UB owns and operates 12 manufacturing facilities of which seven are in the UK.