High-street retailer Marks & Spencer is to turn its food waste into power under a deal with the company’s waste management partner.

Businessgreen.com reports that the green energy created by M&S’ food waste will be enough to power more than 30 of its stores nationwide.

However, while M&S stores up and down the county will be doing their bit to fill up their recycling bins, it will be waste management specialist Shanks Group that converts it into power via a process known as anaerobic digestion (AD).

During the AD process microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen, this means it can be reused as energy.

M&S is to transport all of its collected waste to the Shanks Group’s AD facility in Cumbernauld, Glasgow, which is estimated to produce around 19,000MWh of electricity per year for the group.

On 4-traders.com, Giacinto Patellaro, head of energy supply and risk at M&S, commented: “Having advocated the use of AD technology since the launch of our sustainability programme, Plan A, back in 2007, we’re now seeing in practice how the plant at Cumbernauld is helping M&S to maintain two of our targets: to procure 100% renewable electricity and send zero waste to landfill.”

The news comes just a day after another big player in the retail world, furniture specialist IKEA, also laid out its latest sustainability strategy: generating 100 per cent of its energy needs by wind and solar power alone by 2020.

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