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Sugar producer Iscal is a leading player on the Western European market. Today, the Hainaut-based company produces no less than a quarter of all the sugar in our country. And the business is preparing for the future. With a new 28 million euro investment, Iscal is trebling its storage capacity. 

Iscal saves 30% on energy with new storage facility

Responding to market fluctuations and saving energy

“The expansion of storage capacity brings two major advantages”, explains Managing Director Jérôme Lippens. “First and foremost, this enables us to respond even more efficiently to fluctuations on the sugar market, which will also benefit the sugar beet farmers. But above anything else, this move also helps us to substantially drive down our energy bills by around 30%.”

Today, Iscal has two silos, one with a 40,000 tonne and one with a 6,000 tonne storage capacity. The new silo will hold 80,000 tonnes of sugar. All silos combined, we are now looking at 126 kilotonnes in storage capacity, which means we are in effect trebling our sugar storage capacity at the Fontenoy site. The operation represents an investment worth 28 million euros.

Renewable energy

In addition, Iscal is also planning to build a 3.8 MWh wind turbine. “This renewable energy source will come to supplement our existing biogas production, which currently already covers 15% of our energy requirements. The aim is to work towards reaching zero emission levels,” says Iscal CEO Robert Torck.

12,000 tonnes of beetroots a day

Iscal was set up in 1993. The company’s name is a joinder of the shortened form of Isera and Scaldis, the Latin names for the rivers IJzer and Scheldt (Schelde in Flemish), which act as the supply reservoirs of the company’s plant in Fontenoy in the province of Hainaut.     The company supplies sugar to the B2B sector with major customers including Lotus, Materne, Alpo and Desobry. Approximately 80% of Iscal’s sugar is intended for Belgian customers. 

Once harvested, from mid-September through to mid-January farmers supply their beetroots to the Iscal plant, where they are processed into sugar. With a processing capacity of 12,000 tonnes of beetroot a day and an above-average energy performance, the Fontenoy sugar plant ranks among the most efficient plants in all of Europe.

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