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Alfalfa dehydration in France.

This project aims at reducing emissions by introducing fuel switch (biomass) and energy efficiency measures (pre-drying in fields) in the alfalfa dehydration process. Dehydrated alfalfa is quality fodder for animals: it provides GMO-free proteins that are grown locally. But its production requires energy, which adversely affects its environmental footprint. By modifying the production processes, it is possible to reduce fossil energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Two projects are implemented: alfalfa pre-drying in the fields enables a reduction of the need for water evaporation during the dehydration process; fuel switch from fossil fuel (coal) to local biomass (wood pellets) for the dehydration process.

Environmental impacts:

  • Impact on soil and water: Conservation of the agricultural land and optimization of the management of space. Protection of water resources by reduced use of fertilizer. The projects support a high ecological quality plant, acting as a green cover that prevents soil erosion and maintains underground biodiversity.
  • Impact on air and climate: Reduction of polluting atmospheric emissions related to the reduction of fossil fuel consumption.
  • Impact on safety: unlike fuel boilers, biomass boilers limit toxic gas inhalation risks for employees.

Co-benefits:

  • Direct local job creation: 102, including 54 drivers, 15 managers and 33 maintenance jobs. This job creation represents almost 10% of all jobs in the forage dehydration sector in France
  • Indirect job creation is estimated to be 48 jobs for the manufacturing of material initially invested in, and 2 jobs for the manufacturing of consumables and spare material