Herkkumaa

Modern solution enables carbon-neutral production process at Herkkumaa canned food factory. Herkkumaa decided to replace its current system, which uses…

  • Double-unit with 10 MWh storage capacity
  • Has replaced light fuel oil in process steam production
  • Annual emission reductions 790 tonnes

Modern solution enables carbon-neutral production process at Herkkumaa canned food factory.

Herkkumaa decided to replace its current system, which uses approximately 264,000 liters of light fuel oil per year (2021), with heat storage solution developed by Elstor Oy, committing to a green transition for responsible production and sustainable business prospects. Steam plays a crucial role in food production, as the entire process relies on steam for tasks such as heating boilers, heat treatment, and sterilization that require high temperatures.

Initial Situation with Fossil Fuels

Herkkumaa food factory in Tuulos produced all the necessary process steam by burning light fuel oil. The annual oil consumption for steam production was nearly 270,000 liters, resulting in carbon dioxide emissions of approximately 790 tonnes per year.

“The fluctuation in the prices of fossil fuels has made predicting production costs challenging. Shifting production to fossil-free energy sources reduces price volatility and facilitates pricing, directly impacting consumers’ wallets. The future solution is designed to ensure that availability and pricing of raw materials will not be a problem.”

Atte Rekola, CEO, Herkkumaa Oy

Current Situation with Elstor System

With the new Elstor system, fossil fuels have been replaced with carbon-free electricity, and the energy is stored in a thermal battery. This ensures emission-free processes and theoretically reduces Herkkumaa’s production carbon footprint to zero. Cost-effectiveness is supported by charging the thermal storage during periods of lower electricity prices throughout the day, as well as excellent suitability for participation in frequency regulation reserve markets.

The achieved predictability with this solution also facilitates pricing, ultimately benefiting consumers. The significant increase in oil prices has affected the food industry. Abandoning fossil fuels is not only an ecological choice but also a cost-related one.

The highest daily production levels have exceeded 20 MWh, with a storage capacity of 10 MWh. The independent charging and discharging processes of the Elstor device, along with its ability to simultaneously charge and discharge, are significant operational advantages.

“We particularly appreciate the carbon neutrality enabled by the Elstor project in achieving our environmental goals, but also its ease of use. The end user quickly gets the necessary steam, and production starts are swift.”

Sari Paavola, Factory Manager, Herkkumaa Oy

AI-Based Optimization

AI-based charging optimization constantly monitors upcoming electricity prices, future consumption, and storage capacity to choose the most cost-effective charging hours. The optimization of Herkkumaa’s device has worked very well. In addition to minimizing customer costs, the electricity grid benefits from flexible consumption capacity. The device’s charging evens out the electricity grid load. Moreover, the device also participates in reserve markets to balance the electricity grid.

Why Elstor?

In their steam production solution, Herkkumaa chose Elstor’s solution to achieve a genuinely carbon-neutral production process. Compared to other carbon-neutral alternatives, the benefits of Elstor’s device arise from charging price optimization and supporting the electricity grid rather than burdening it.

“Well-developed automation allows real-time monitoring and continuous improvement of our operations. By following the data, we gain deeper insights into our processes.”

Harri Halonen, Technical Manager, Herkkumaa Oy

References

790 t/year
mitigated carbon dioxide emissions

Herkkumaa

  • Double-unit with 10 MWh storage capacity
  • Has replaced light fuel oil in process steam production
  • Annual emission reductions 790 tonnes
320 t/year
mitigated carbon dioxide emissions

Lappeenrannan Lämpövoima

  • Basic unit with 5 MWh storage capacity
  • Replaces natural gas in production of district heating
  • Annual emission reductions 320 tonnes
< 300 t / v
mitigated carbon dioxide emissions

Kaskein Marja

  • Basic-unit with 5 MWh storage capacity
  • Replaces the usage of natural gas in process steam production
  • Emission reduction potential up to 300 tonnes per year
Elstor logo
340 t / v
mitigated carbon dioxide emissions

Oy Roberts Ab

  • Basic-unit with 5 MWh storage capacity
  • Will replace natural gas in process steam production
  • Annual emission reduction estimated at 340 tons.