An Arbroath farming family has added a renewable energy project to its core agriculture business.
East Balmirmer farm has produced livestock, cereals, vegetables, potatoes and daffodils over the 70 years it has been in the Galloway family, but Robert Galloway and his son Rory are now focused on the production of dried wood chip for commercial use.
The new project involves buying Scottish timber from sustainable sources, chipping it on site and drying it over two floors to produce chips for use in commercial and domestic biomass boilers.
A Kalvis boiler and weigh bridge was installed on the farm which means they can dry grain without using oil-fired grain driers.
Robert Galloway said it hadn’t been an easy journey, but the family was enthusiastic about the new venture.
“The planning and groundworks took up a considerable amount of time and expense, and it has been hard making inroads into a new market,” he said.
“But I realise the opportunity this holds for our future and for a more environmentally sustainable option for businesses’ heating requirements.”
The accredited wood chip is used for a range of purposes, including heating hen sheds and district heating schemes.
In addition to the diversification, the Galloway family has also created new woodland on four hectares of land to provide a habitat for insects and birds.