FrieslandCampina shifting operations to renewable energy
LAHORE: FrieslandCampina, Dutch multinational dairy cooperative, is gradually shifting its operation at its Sahiwal plant to environment-friendly renewable energy resources.
The manufacturer of the best seller tetra pack brand, Olper, is meeting 15 per cent of the energy needs through biomass. The plant, which is producing both milk and Omore ice-cream, is generating the rest of the required power through furnace oil and gas.
With the aim of phasing out polluting fuel, former Engro Foods will set up a solar park on 15 acres of land with a capacity of producing 2.5MW.
The functioning of the solar park will instantly increase the share of renewable energy to 30 per cent, which will be brought to 50 per cent by 2030 and to 100 per cent (zero carbon emission) by 2050.
Talking to a group of newsmen during their visit to the Sahiwal plant in connection with the 150th anniversary of FrieslandCampina Nasar Ailia Naqvi, general manager of the plant, said: “We are an environmentally-friendly company. We plan to phase out polluting fuel. Presently, the share of renewable energy is just 15 per cent. It will be gradually increased and hopefully we will achieve the target of zero carbon footprint by 2050.”
To a question, he said both the plants, Sahiwal and Sukkur, would be put on solar energy. “After Sahiwal plant, the one in Sukkur will also be put on solar energy”, he added.
Naqvi also shared details of the continuous efforts to reduce pumping of groundwater by recycling wastewater for further use.
“We are making efforts to recycle 100 per cent of the used water with the aim of putting less burden on the underground water. Even sewage water will be recycled to irrigate plants and grass in the factory premises,” he said.
Muhammad Sohail Sarwar, general manager of Agri Services, said that the high input cost was the biggest challenge being faced by the dairy sector.
“[The] main ingredients such as soybean and maize are very expensive. High electricity tariff and duties on import of machinery are a headache for [the] cattle farmers,” he said, and suggested the government to facilitate people in setting up dairy farms.
“[The] low-cost feed and agriculture tariff will encourage people to set up dairy farms,” Sarwar said, adding that the import duties on machinery were ranging from 11 per cent to 33 per cent, which were not affordable for small farm owners.
“[The] reduction in duties on machinery such as milking machines is the need of the hour. Use of machines can help get more yield/animal and reduce wastage and human-contact,” he added.
Referring to the high prices of tetra pack milk, he said these were due to high packaging and processing cost. He claimed the profit margins were very thin for the industry, as they pay enough money to registered farmers in addition to high packaging cost.
The packaged milk was safe and far better for human health than loose milk, where contamination and adulteration could not be overruled, he added.
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