Complete food cycle–Sea resort hotels produce its own fruits and vegetables. The foodwaste is used in anaerobic digester for energy production and for compost
Albena, one of the biggest Black sea resorts demonstrate very good circular approach in hotel chain management. The owner company is very environmentally oriented and constructed a biogas plant - anaerobic digester for agricultural and kitchen waste, to produce energy with cogeneration - electric and heat. The heat is used for a greenhouse (and district heating – which is still in progress). The digested material is used as liquid fertilizer in the agricultural fields of the company, for the parks and gardens of the resort. The production of the farms goes directly to the hotels.
With its start, the practice helped in many different aspects. It provided high resource efficiency, good reputation of the company, saved finances, provided quality products. It still have some obstacles with the kitchen waste, but the team is working on solving the problems.
The main “costumers” of the products are the hotels of the chain and all other daughter companies. The electricity is sold to Utility company. Unfortunately there are lot of problems, since the Utility company may always reject complete utilisation of the electricity and the plant should stop producing it. It happens quite often. The fertilisers are used predominantly in companies gardens, bat they are available to all local farmers.The municipality is interested in the future cooperation , so some of the municipal waste to be utilised in the plant as well.
1.7 million euros
Evidence of success
The plant is financially sustainable – it repays the bank debt and generates additional profit. Improved waste management. Higher energy independency.
Difficulties to form the team-lack of local experts. Deficit for spare parts. The meteo conditions are still disturbing the process. The Utility Company some times stop buying the electricity. The requirements for sanitation of the kitchen waste before treatment for biogas required new equipment
Potential for learning or transfer
The practice is possible to be implemented in many agricultural farms, and to be joint project for smaller producers. It will also provide employment, environmentally friendly source of energy, bio fertilizers for the agriculture and clean food products.
This practice might be of interest for public authorities as well, because food waste is a major component in household wastes and very difficult to be utilized or disposed in environmentally friendly manner. With good cooperation between local authorities, farmers and SMEs might be created very efficient, win-win projects, based on similar circular approach to all kind of organic wastes - food waste, agricultural residues, derbies of wood processing, caning and other types of small industries, using bio materials, for the benefit of all community.
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