Fulcrum and Premier Foods serve up £4m gas pipeline for Devon factory

17 Oct 2018

Premier Foods’ factory in Devon now has a continuous gas supply after it teamed up with Fulcrum, the UK’s leading independent multi-utility infrastructure and services provider, to deliver the significant utility connection.

The £4m contract to design and install the 12-kilometre gas pipeline will be funded over a five-year period. The pipeline connects Premier Foods’ Lifton-based factory, which produces household brand names including Ambrosia, to the natural gas network.

The installation will enable the company to reduce its carbon footprint by cutting its reliance on fuel oil, the number of road tankers currently used to deliver the fuel, as well as provide overall cost savings.

The new infrastructure installation also has the potential to benefit the local Devonshire community, as residents in the vicinity of the new gas pipeline will now have the option to connect to the gas network for the first time.

The project was completed by a dedicated team of project managers and engineers, which utilised specialist equipment to overcome challenging terrain including successfully crossing the River Tamar. Following the installation, Fulcrum will continue to own and operate the pipeline, as part of its UK-wide utility asset portfolio.

Throughout the project Fulcrum worked closely with the local community by holding regular meetings and publishing online blog updates through a dedicated website to keep residents informed of progress.

Fulcrum has a proven track record of undertaking fuel conversion projects for large UK food and drink producers, including a number of whisky distilleries in the Scottish Highlands. The switch to natural gas has delivered tangible benefits for these companies.

Martin Harrison, Chief Executive of Fulcrum, said: “The ability to bring continuous gas supplies to rural locations like Lifton can have a positive effect on reducing the environmental impact and carbon footprint of large manufacturing operations. Working with Premier Foods builds on our experience in delivering timely and efficient gas pipeline projects to the food industry, while also helping to expand the gas network for the benefit of the local community.”

Steve Pretty, Factory General Manager of the Ambrosia Creamery, said: “This is a major step forward for the site and the local community. Not only do we now have a cleaner and more sustainable energy source which is reducing our carbon footprint, but local residents also have the opportunity of now switching to gas if they wish to.”