Consumer-products giant Unilever has unveiled on Monday a new agreement with Genesis Biopartner Group for the collection and transformation of expired food products into renewable energy, as part of a sustainability plan.
The waste, which includes expired ice cream and mustard from Unilever’s deposit in Aricestii Rahtivani, will be turned into renewable energy at the Filipestii de Padure plant in Prahova County.
The biogas cogeneration plant was opened last summer, following a EUR 5 million investment by Romanian holding Genesis Biopartner. The holding’s founder is German Michael Dietrich, who also controls constructions group Baupartner.
The plant has 1 MW of installed capacity for electricity generation and 1.2MW for thermal energy. Its first client was local meat producer Cristim, which uses the steam for a nearby plant.
“Our collaboration with Genesis Biopartner represents a step forward regarding our local contribution to the sustainability program. We are glad that the food waste from the Unilever deposit will be transformed now into essential resources for the community and we aim to find this kind of solutions going forward,” said Catalin Oprisan, supply chain manager of Unilever South Central Europe.
Unilever aims to reduce the impact on the environment of its whole production chain and reduce the consumption of raw agricultural material, impacting over 1 billion consumers by 2020, according to its Sustainable Living Plan (USPL).
Romania reached around 100MW of incentivized biomass and biogas capacities by March 2014, according to grid operator Transelectrica.