Whisky barrels feed greenhouse boiler

November 26, 2019
Written by Nature Fresh Farms (edited)
NatureFresh Farms has recently teamed up with whisky producer Hiram Walker & Sons Limited, who is now providing the greenhouse operation with whisky cull barrels to fuel their biomass boiler.

In 2018, whisky producer Hiram Walker & Sons reached out to NatureFresh Farms seeking help in reducing their surplus of whisky cull barrels. To date, Hiram Walker has provided them with over 25,000 barrels. The success of the arrangement has expanded the program, where in addition to the barrels, Hiram Walker sends other scrap wood material including used bungs, wood shavings, and damaged pallets.

Every month NatureFresh Farms receives approximately 400 barrels that are shredded and stockpiled for the colder seasons. The wood chips are fed to the biomass boiler’s fire box, heating the water that is pumped through rails throughout each row of plants to warm the greenhouse. To date they have burned over 25,000 barrels equaling about 1,125 tons of wood, producing about 20,000 gigajoules equivalent to nearly 520,000 cubic meters of natural gas. By burning the 25,000 barrels it saves Nature Fresh Farms 520,000 m3 of natural gas. That would heat the average home in Canada for 192 years, saving 1,000 tons of CO2 emissions.

“The partnership between Hiram Walker and NatureFresh Farms can best be described as a win-win situation for both companies,” said Darren Taylor, Customer Service & Planning, Bulk Operations at Hiram Walker & Sons Limited. “Hiram Walker has an environmentally friendly way to dispose of barrels and NatureFresh Farms receives a good supply of clean-burning oak wood.”

Questions or comments? Email greenhouse@annexweb.com

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