SCOTLAND’S largest organic waste recycling company has secured £540,000 from the Zero Waste Scotland’s Circular Economy Investment Fund.

The £18 million fund provides investment for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) based in Scotland in support of projects that will deliver growth in the circular economy, thanks to the European Regional Development Fund.

Keenan Recycling will use the funding to expand and improve its integrated approach to collecting and turning organic waste into green energy from its new site in Linwood.

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The waste plant near Glasgow will unpack and process the food waste, collected and delivered by Keenan Recycling’s fleet of disposal trucks. The waste will be turned into liquidised fuel that will be shared with local anaerobic digester (AD) plants for conversion into green energy. The Linwood plant and integrated service represent a £1.7m investment overall and follows the successful trial of a biofuel plant at Keenan’s premises in New Deer, Aberdeenshire.

This pilot plant demonstrated the demand for biofuel which can be readily produced. With contamination reduced at the collection point, the fuel is prepared in a form that is transportable, user-friendly and high in dry matter.

Processing more than 100,000 tonnes of organic waste a year, Keenan is already supplying AD plants throughout Scotland.

The new centre in Linwood is due to open in March 2020.

Operations director, Gregor Keenan, explained: “Gas derived from our biofuel is used to create electricity, gas to grid and heat. After this stage a clean material called digestate is produced which can then be used as a biofertilizer; free of contamination, ensuring a quality product for the end-user.”

This approach aims to connect and integrate waste producers, collectors, AD plants and end-users of digestate.

By adding value and incentivising the process to produce a high-value energy fuel, Keenan hopes to change the market drivers in food waste recycling – and boost the circular economy of Scotland.

Louise McGregor, head of circular economy, Zero Waste Scotland said: “By increasing efforts to salvage more organic waste, Keenan Recycling is making best use of resources that could have otherwise ended up in landfill.”