Latest News | 28 February 2024

New ‘energy centre’ unveiled at major food production hub

Derby City Council
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A new ‘Energy Centre’ which will help reduce the carbon footprint of businesses on a major food and production and distribution hub being created in Derby has been unveiled.

In a ceremony held this week, Mid-Derbyshire MP Pauline Latham, along with Councillor Baggy Shanker, leader of Derby City Council and Paul Simpson, the city council’s chief executive, jointly unveiled a plaque at the official opening of the centre at SmartParc SEGRO Derby.

SmartParc SEGRO Derby is providing two million sq ft of food production and distribution space at the former Celanese site, which will deliver 5,000 jobs for Derby.

And a critical part of the scheme is delivering low-carbon, collaborative food production on the park – which is where the innovative central energy centre comes in.

The first of its kind in the food industry, the Energy Centre is a shared heating and cooling system, which recycles heat from refrigeration plants and reuses it to heat water and offices. It is a future-proofed energy balancing system – designed with an ability to connect future innovative technologies.

Jackie Wild, founder and chief executive of SmartParc, said: “We are very proud that our revolution in sustainable food production begins here in Derby.”

It is estimated that between 2024 and 2030, the system will provide annual carbon emissions savings of around 27,000 tons compared with an equivalent system.

According to SmartParc, a minimum annual seasonal efficiency of 400% is guaranteed to tenants – over four times more efficient than gas boilers.

The official opening of the Energy Centre, which was attended by around 80 dignitaries from across the region, also marked the launch of the Midlands Engine Food White Paper.

SmartParc has been working with the Midlands Engine on the document, which highlights the huge potential that exists in the Midlands to lead the transformation of the food system to deliver better food security for the region and the country.

Among the dignitaries at this week’s official opening ceremony was Sir John Peace, chairman of the Midlands Engine.

Sir John said: “Launching our Food White Paper at SmartParc provided the perfect platform to call for the transformation of our food system.

“Both the report and this extraordinary site are built upon regional collaboration – clear examples of what can be achieved when partners come together to drive their industry forward.

“This Food White Paper is another excellent tool we can use as we continue to advocate for the region’s food sector, championing the exceptional strengths and opportunities to be found in the Midlands.”

To read the white paper visit

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