Only months after its launch, Greenvale has won no less than two influential awards for Project Cascade, its innovative root vegetable washing system. Project Cascade, which could save the UK food processing industry billions of litres of water every year, won the prestigious Re:Fresh Innovation of the Year Award at a glittering ceremony on May 13. Just two weeks earlier it had won the Environmental Initiative Food Processing award, sponsored by Siemens. The Re:Fresh awards, which are organised by the Fresh Produce Consortium (FPC), are recognised as the most prestigious accolades in the fresh produce industry. This year’s ceremony, at the InterContinental London Park Lane, was attended by 550 of the food industry’s leading names.
The Innovation Award, sponsored by Stubbins,is awarded for the new product, service or project that has contributed most to the development of the fresh produce industry since April 2009. “This year there was tough competition from a record number of entries,” commented Nigel Jenney, Chief Executive of the FPC. “The judges were delighted to recognise that Greenvale has developed an innovative and original process which successfully addresses a clearly defined problem with water usage.”
Project Cascade brings together technologies from other areas of the food industry, and wider industries, to solve some of the issues that all vegetable processing facilities face. These include the vast volumes of water used to clean root vegetables – but that’s not the only issue the system addresses. "With Cascade, the product quality is dramatically improved, because we are washing in constantly regenerated water,” says Andy Clarkson, general manager of Greenvale’s Tern Hill, Shropshire site. “Plus, the new system all but eliminates the risk of bacterial cross contamination, which is a huge problem for the industry."
Project Cascade has been trialled at the Tern Hill site, where it has slashed water consumption by a massive 75%. The site washes 140,000 tonnes of fresh potatoes per annum – Project Cascade is currently saving the equivalent of over 60million litres of water a year. The company believes the figure could be as high as 70 million litres once the system is fully operational.
Clarkson was on hand to receive the FPC Innovation Award and says: “This award is very important for us. Project Cascade is a new technology that could save UK business millions of pounds – the Innovation Award underlines the technology’s benefits and will help us promote its potential to the whole market.”
The Environmental Initiative award was presented at a ceremony at Hinckley Island Hotel, Leicestershire, on April 29, as part of the Appetite for Engineering conference. “This award underlines Cascade’s very significant environmental benefits,” says Clarkson. “Winning two awards in two weeks is testament to the first class work of the development team at Tern Hill.”