APPROVED - Pelco’s pellet plant for Ely that will process 150,000 tonnes of wheat and oil seed rape straw a year

PUBLISHED: 17:02 06 August 2015 | UPDATED: 17:02 06 August 2015

New straw pelleting plant for Ely

New straw pelleting plant for Ely


A straw pelleting plant near Ely won approval from East Cambs District Council.

Norwich based Pelco say they will start work shortly on the plant and hope to have it ready by November next year.

The company says that over the course of a year the plant, which would be 100m long and have a tower 47m high, would process around 150,000 tonnes of wheat and oil seed rape straw gathered from farms within a 50-mile radius.

Baled straw would be delivered to the site – on land south west of the Potter Group in Queen Adelaide Way- by HGVs before being converted into pellets and transported by rail to renewable energy plants across the region.

Simon Barnard, chief operating officer of Pelco said: “This is only the first of at least five plants to be built by Pelco across the country providing a major new market for farmers’ straw.

“Farmers will be able to benefit from the value of their straw with long term Pelco contracts which are now available from next harvest. “Farmers within a radius of 50 miles from Ely will be the first to be able to engage in this opportunity and should contact Pelco to find out more.”

Baled straw will be delivered to the plant by road from ‘hub’ farms; and then the pellets will be transported onwards by rail to renewable energy plants, such as the proposed combined heat and power plant at Generation Park Norwich.

The spokesman said: “Straw pellets provide an ideal low carbon biomass fuel with good consistent burning characteristics.

“Pelco is working very closely with the whole farming industry – landowners, farmers, agronomists, contractors and hauliers - to create a sustainable and professional supply chain for straw.”

Mr Barnard said: “We believe we have created realistic contracts that can provide a mutual reward for all parties. We can either take baled straw or swath in the fields. “We have looked to take every aspect into account from effective cleaning down of balers between fields to minimizing field traffic.

“There is finance available for straw barns and we are ensuring that contracts are sustainable even in a bad harvest year. We are not taking barley straw because of its value to the livestock industry.”

Future pelleting plants are planned for Yorkshire, Warwickshire, Wiltshire and

Hertfordshire, and are likely to come on stream at the rate of one a year.

Straw pellets are produced by a combined process of grinding, pressure and heat. Pelco believe the use of straw pellets as fuel is far cleaner than traditional fossil fuels.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ely Standard visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ely Standard staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ely Standard account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 12:26

More than £8 million in funding has been agreed for a study which could bring forward work to ease the bottleneck at the Ely North junction by five years.

33 minutes ago

Top up your fruit and vegetables and start exercising to make healthy living your goal with the help of a free health trainer service in the Ely area.

33 minutes ago

As the weather brightens and we get more sunny days drivers are being encouraged to be on the look out for bikers.

Yesterday, 13:38

A photographer from Isleham is to swap snapping pictures for leaping out of a plane – all in the name of charity.

Most read stories

Most commented stories

Digital Edition

Read the Ely Standard e-edition E-edition

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter