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UK: Matthews Flower Group building 2 hectare cut flower greenhouse

A collaboration between Andigestion Ltd and Matthews Flower Growers Ltd will see renewable heat and electricity generated at Holsworthy Biogas Plant, create up to 54 new jobs in Holsworthy.

Andigestion already employees 17 staff at Holsworthy Biogas Plant, generating 80MW of renewable electricity per day from food waste, which is exported into the local grid.

The project will see Andigestion install heat recovery equipment to their generators, as well as drying equipment to produce woodchip which will be burnt in order to satisfy the seasonal heat requirements of flower production. The operation and maintenance of this equipment will generate a further 5 jobs at the site.

Matthew Flower Growers Ltd will install greenhouses to grow flowers for supply to major supermarkets. 26 full-time jobs and 20 part-time jobs will be created on site for Matthews Flower Growers with another 3 jobs for delivery drivers. There will be further employment for training, maintenance, suppliers of bulbs & plants, fertilisers & chemicals.

A planning application has been submitted to Devon County Council that includes:-
  • 19,900 m2 of glass Greenhouses & water storage tanks;
  • A 1,255 m2 Packaging Building, Staff facilities & Offices;
  • A 200m2 extension to a previously approved building;
  • Timber storage & chipping areas;
  • Plant & Equipment to produce quality controlled wood chip and fertiliser;
  • Plant & Equipment to provide secure supplies of heat and electricity to the greenhouses and other drying equipment.

Along with the heat and power from the Biogas Plant, rainwater will be collected from the greenhouse roofs and used to grow the plants. The development will minimise the overall carbon footprint of the site, as well as offsetting flower imports from overseas.

Apart from staff vehicles, it is expected that there will be only two HGV lorries and one chiller lorry movement per day.

Consultations have already taken place with representatives from the community including Holsworthy Town Council, Holsworthy Hamlets Parish Council and the District & County Councillor.

The applicants have worked closely with Devon County Council Planning Department, Torridge District Council and the Environment Agency.

It is hoped that the Greenhouses will be operational in early 2015. It is anticipated that nearly all of the new employment will be from Holsworthy and the surrounding area.

Below some quotes about the project:

Devon County & Torridge District Councillor, Barry Parsons says …..
“I am delighted to see this application; one which further illustrates the interest in Holsworthy as a town where businesses can progress. It is, too, so pleasing to see Andigestion Ltd and Matthews Flower Growers Ltd working in partnership with one another. The opportunity arises for significant local employment provision in the town and in an industry that sits so comfortably both in terms of its environment as well as optimizing the use of Holsworthy’s alternative renewable energy provision.”

Philip Collins, Leader of Torridge District Council, says: ‘Growing the economy is a high priority for Torridge. The synergy involved in this project with its sustainable use of local resources and low environmental impact makes so much sense I hope more will follow in their example.’

Pam Johns, Deputy Mayor of Holsworthy Town Council says : ‘This is another good news story for Holsworthy and the surrounding area both environmentally and economically and the commitment of Andigestion to this community is very much appreciated. Long may it continue.’

Holsworthy Hamlets Parish Council, says : ‘We are in full support of this exciting new project which we hope will bring employment to local people.’

Tim Jones, Chairman of Devon & Cornwall Business Council, hugely supports this exciting investment. A massive effort has gone into the regeneration of the rural economy through the Rural Growth Network and significant highway investments; this has targeted Holsworthy as an important centre for the agricultural industry. To find such a significant investor as Matthews Flower Growers Ltd is an endorsement of this plan and recognition of the unique qualities which Devon has to offer in support of the horticultural industry. There is a strong expectation that this project will lead to significant further investment and to supporting local companies and local employment opportunities.

For more information
Matthews Flower Group
Ian Matthews, Managing Director
M: 0783 499 1859

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