ABP Food Group opens €24.5m green energy plant in UK

Goodman-owned group’s facility to produce enough energy to power 12,000 homes

Beef baron Larry Goodman's ABP Food Group is to invest €24.5 million in a green energy plant in the UK.

The injection by ABP’s renewable division Olleco will produce enough sustainable energy to power the equivalent of 12,000 homes.

The new 15MW “anaerobic digestion facility” in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, is located adjacent to dairy company Arla, allowing it to become a zero-carbon milk-processing facility.

Green energy has become a significant growth sector in both the UK and the Republic, as companies seek to ensure their facilities are carbon neutral.


Olleco managing director Robert Behan said the new facility was "an excellent example of the circular economy in action", with multiple supply chain partners working together to deliver sustainability.

“This state-of-the-art Olleco facility will convert in excess of 100,000 tonnes of waste into heat, power and bio-methane for export to the national grid, and bio-fertiliser for both of ABP Food Group’s and Arla’s farmer suppliers,” he said.

“Sustainability is a key priority right across the ABP Food Group. The company has invested and implemented innovative sustainability measures . . . to reduce the environmental footprint of our business.”

ABP was the largest beef processor in the Republic until the competition authority last month gave the green light to the acquisition by Dawn Meats of Tyrone-based Dunbia.

ABP opened the world’s first certified carbon-neutral abattoir in Ellesmere in 2015, where waste material from the food-processing operation is used in conjunction with used cooking oil to provide the energy requirements on site.

Earlier this year, ABP achieved triple accreditation from the Carbon Trust for the third consecutive year.

Olleco collects waste food and cooking oil from the retail and food service sector and converts this waste into bio-diesel, bio-gas and bio-fertiliser. The company employs more than 600 people across the UK.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter