Sainsbury’s powers entire supermarket with food waste

A Sainsbury’s store in Cannock has become the first supermarket in the world to derive 100% of its power through its own food waste

The first ever 100% food waste-powered supermarket has opened its doors in Cannock.

The Sainsbury’s store, together with waste recycling company Biffa, accomplished their mission to produce enough energy through anaerobic digestion of leftover food so that the store can safely disconnect from the national power grid.

All food waste will be transported to Biffa’s nearby plant, where it will be converted into biogas and used for energy generation. The electricity produced will then be sent back to the store via a 1.5km transmission line.

The initiative will not interfere with an already-established practice that allows food and poverty charities to have first pick of (safe and edible) leftover products. Subsequent leftovers will be offered to farmers for their animals, and whatever is left after that will go to the anaerobic digestor.

The supermarket chain is the UK’s largest user of energy produced from food waste and anaerobic digestion and they also claim that none of their food waste goes to landfill.

Sainsbury’s is not the only store to adopt this technology. In 2013 US supermarket chain Ralph’s managed to meet 20% of its energy demands using food waste, making it the first ever supermarket to generate energy this way. The Cannock store, however, is the first in the world to meet 100% of its energy demands through this process.

First published by The Green Optimist