Support from the rural development programme was used to buy new machinery and expand the production capacity of a biogas plant.
During the 2007-2013 programming period, twelve farmers in Alvesta municipality began to look for possibilities to produce renewable fuel. Using Rural Development Programme (RDP) support they set up the Alvesta Biogas company in the county of Kronoberg.
After operating the Alvesta Biogas for a year, several possibilities for improvements were identified. The main one was that the biogas plant had only one compressor and when maintenance work on the compressor took place, the whole production stopped. Having one compressor also limited the amount of manure that could be processed. Support from the 2014-2020 RDP was used to install an additional compressor in the biogas plant.
An additional 100 000 kg of biogas are produced per year thanks to the new compressor. In total, 1.5 million kg of biogas are produced annually. This amount of biogas replaces about 2.2 million of litres of petrol.
About 150 tons per year of substrate are processed by the plant. Besides biogas, the anaerobic process also produces ‘bio-fertiliser’. The produced ‘bio-fertiliser’ is not only used by the farmers who run the plant, but the company also sells about 15 000 m3 of the bio-fertiliser per year to other farmers who are not co-owners.
The higher concentration of usable nitrogen for plants in the ‘bio-fertiliser’ means that farmers do not need buy as much mineral fertiliser.
The bio-fertiliser does not smell as much as ordinary manure. So, farmers whose home is close to their fields are less affected by the smell when fertilising the fields.