In future, Leiber will use waste wood to generate a large proportion of the heat energy and about one third of the electricity required for its production operations in Engter, Lower Saxony. To this end, the brewers’ yeast specialist is investing around 14 million euros in a new biomass power plant.
Regarding the start of construction in October 2022, Bernd Schmidt-Ankum, Managing Director of Leiber GmbH, said: “With the biomass power plant in Engter, we want to use waste wood to replace around 70% of the gas previously required for our production. Here, we are pursuing the goal of manufacturing our products not only in a sustainable way, but also in a climate-neutral way in the future.”
Leiber needs heat for the production process: for drying the brewers’ yeast in spray towers and for extracting high-quality, health-promoting ingredients. At Engter, this thermal energy has been generated from gas, until now. To replace this fossil fuel with a renewable raw material, Leiber is building a biomass power plant that will be fuelled by waste wood.
“By the end of 2023, the new biomass power plant should be supplying around half of the gas and electrical energy. This will allow us to save up to 10,000 tonnes of CO2 per year,” said Oliver Beckmann, Director Technology & Production. “This will bring us closer to our goal of using energy even more efficiently and manufacturing Leiber’s products as sustainably and climate-neutrally as possible.”
The boiler plant of the new biomass power plant will be constructed on a footprint of 760 square metres. The wood storage facility covers an area of 570 square metres and can store up to 2,500 cubic metres of waste wood. A maximum of 3 tonnes of wood will be burnt per hour, equating to around 15,000 tonnes per year. The waste wood used to fuel the plant is waste from wood processing facilities, or pruned material from landscape conservation.
Leiber will have the effects of this energy generation checked annually and recorded in a transparent manner as part of the company’s sustainability strategy. Leiber is certified on a regular basis according to the ZNU Quality Seal for Sustainable Management, which is awarded by the Center for Sustainable Leadership at the University of Witten Herdecke.
Leiber refines brewers’ yeast to produce innovative products for humans and animals. For our customers we carry out research in our own laboratories and develop tailor-made product solutions for healthy nutrition, biotechnology and agricultural applications. We reliably supply excellent products – and have been upcycling at world-market level since 1954.