Vireol will be the operator of a major wheat-to-ethanol facility in the North of England, which will produce 200m litres of sustainable UK ethanol each year. This facility will provide "good renewable transport fuels" delivering carbon savings in excess of 60 per cent when compared to use of oil in transport fuels. Through the process of bio-refining, we will also provide 175,000 tonnes of high protein animal feed for use in the UK animal feed trade. It is anticipated that this will reduce the amount of soy meal the UK will need to import annually from South America.
The bioethanol produced will be refined from UK feed wheat, the majority of which is currently used to produce animal feed or exported to produce bioethanol overseas. The UK grows significantly more feed wheat than it requires and typically exports substantial quantities to Europe. It is expected that this Project will use wheat that would otherwise be exported.
The Project intends to take advantage of a unique timing opportunity that has developed in the ethanol supply market. Driven by a European legislative mandate, European ethanol consumption is expected to increase to a minimum of 23 billion litres by 2020, growing incrementally over the next decade.
The site for the facility is already owned and planning permission has been received.
Construction is expected to start in 2011 and will take around 2 years to complete.