Bioenergy DevCo to buy Perdue facility
COLUMBIA, Md. — A Maryland renewable energy company, Bioenergy DevCo, last month announced its purchase of the Perdue AgriRecycle organic soil composting facility located near Seaford, Del., as part of a 20-year partnership with Perdue Farms for the supply of organic material from Perdue processing facilities.
The AgriRecycle facility is currently permitted to compost 30,000 tons of poultry processing and hatchery byproducts from integrator litter from poultry farms located on the Delmarva Peninsula.
Under the terms of the agreement with Perdue Farms, Bioenergy DevCo will purchase the existing composting facility and operate it while working within the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control and Sussex County permits process to construct an anaerobic digester at the site.
The anaerobic digestion process will transition the poultry processing byproducts to both renewable natural gas and an organic soil amendment while continuing to support the compost facility, Bioenergy DevCo said in a statement.
“Our mission is to make sure anaerobic digestion becomes the de facto solution for managing organic material in the United States, and the Perdue AgriRecycle facility, which is already composting at a large scale, is the perfect venue to showcase the potential for this technology,” said Shawn Kreloff, founder and CEO of Bioenergy DevCo. “The use of anaerobic digestion, combined with enhanced composting of organic material, reinforces Perdue’s ongoing commitment to driving economic development in the region and adopting innovative solutions that are good for the environment and the bottom line.”
According to a news release, Bioenergy DevCo’s proposed anaerobic digestion facility will be capable of processing a range of organic material from local poultry farmers and processors including Dissolved Air Flotation, hatchery byproducts and poultry litter.
In addition to the production of truly renewable natural gas, the anaerobic digestion process creates a virtually odor free digestate, a natural soil amendment considered a Class A compost that will be used to enhance the site’s existing compost production.
“We believe the relationship between Perdue and Bioenergy DevCo offers a large-scale opportunity to create a truly consistent source of clean, renewable natural gas in a sustainable way that will benefit the industry and the environment for years to come,” said Bioenergy DevCo’s Shawn Kreloff. “The ability to finance, design, build and operate a facility like AgriRecycle that includes both anaerobic digestion and compost options for managing organic material makes Bioenergy DevCo an essential asset not only to Perdue but the poultry industry and the communities on Delmarva where it does business.”
Since 2001, Perdue has invested $90 million to operate the only agricultural recycling facility on Delmarva, first pelletizing the material for use on golf courses, lawns and organic farms and then transitioning to composting.
In 18 years, it has converted 2.5 billion pounds of poultry litter into an organic fertilizer for companies like Scotts Miracle-Gro and into compost, according to Perdue.
In addition, the facility has recycled 70 million pounds of nitrogen and 46 million pounds of phosphorous, half of which was moved outside the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
Though praised for its environmental impact, in either of its methods, palletizing or composting, the facility was not profitable.
“Our commitment to environmental stewardship is stronger than ever. We see this partnership as an opportunity to further expand on the work we’ve done so far,” said Randy Day, CEO of Perdue Farms. “With Bioenergy, we have found a partner that enables us to be more sustainable, create cost-savings, and help produce renewable energy while continuing to address soil health and nutrient management in the environmentally sensitive Chesapeake Bay watershed.”
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