Princes partners new Mauritian bio plant venture


Biogas project to reduce CO2 emissions of Princes Tuna Mauritius operations by over 8,000 tonnes per year

International food and drink group Princes is partnering with a new bio plant venture, which is set to reduce CO2emissions from its Mauritian tuna processing sites by 8,650 tonnes per year. This represents 80% of the current operational emissions for Princes Tuna Mauritius (PTM) largest manufacturing site.

The collaborative project sees Princes entering into long term agreement with Energie des Mascareignes (EDM) – a joint waste-to-value venture between UK based Green Create and IBL Energy – which will convert all semi-solid waste from PTM sites, alongside effluent water, into biogas via anaerobic digestion.

At PTM’s Riche Terre site, the biogas will power 100% of the facility’s steam cooking requirements, replacing heavy fuel oil, and any fish waste currently sent to landfill will be eliminated. Work on the new bio plant has started and completion is expected in late 2022.

With two dedicated production sites, including Marine Road and Riche Terre, PTM is the largest tuna business in the Indian Ocean, and has over 40 years of experience in tuna processing for Princes and customer own brand ranges, as well as foodservice and industrial customers.

Neil Bohannon, Group Director for Fish at Princes, said: “This project is an incredibly positive step, which will reduce our reliance on heavy fuel oil, significantly reducing emissions from our Mauritian site operations and cutting waste through the use of renewable, clean energy. We have been repurposing solid waste for decades into fishmeal and oil, and now this agreement with EDM will close the loop on our semi-solid and liquid waste. This is part of a number of changes being implemented across Princes sites to reduce our environmental impact as we work towards carbon neutral operations by 2030.”

A further by-product created through the removal of nitrogen and phosphates in the waste effluent water from both PTM sites will be extracted for use as a biological fertiliser. Additionally, chemicals such as flocculants, precipitants and coagulants, as well as cleaning chemicals used in the current waste treatment system, will be eradicated through the project, which amounts to approximately 80 tonnes a year.

Solid fish waste at PTM, including tuna heads offal, skin and bones are already diverted to a nearby plant of Marine Biotechnology Products (MBP) – a subsidiary of IBL – for fishmeal and oil creation.

The PTM biogas project will support Princes’ 2030GreenGoals initiative, announced in July, which outlines the Group’s commitment to become a carbon neutral business across its UK and international operations by 2030, against a 2018/2019 baseline. This ambition builds on important progress made since 2014/2015 to reduce the Group’s carbon emissions, which represents a 23% decrease of over 34,000 tonnes of CO2.

By 2030, Princes also aims to increase internal energy generation up to 50%, while reducing water waste by 25%, general waste by 30% and food waste by 50%.