Mushroom supplier benefits with 426kW of solar panels
Walsh Mushrooms has been a key supplier of quality mushrooms to UK supermarkets for the last 40 years. They supply 500 tonnes of mushrooms to all sectors each week accounting for over 17% of the UK market. Their packaging and distribution warehouse at Evesham has high energy requirements using over 1,100,000 units of electricity per annum.
To continue their commitment towards sustainable mushroom development the business decided to invest in business solar panels, which would help reduce their carbon footprint and running costs. Alan Walsh, Chairman of Walsh Mushrooms received quotes from several suppliers. After discussions with Mypower who were available day and night to answer any questions the business might have, we put forward several proposals and offered some robust practical advice to help demonstrate our knowledge and understanding.
Mr Walsh confirmed "Mypower’s price in the tender process was competitive and following my research on Mypower and verifying their references I awarded them the contract based on professionalism, attention to detail and price as well as their complete project management offering."
The initial contract was for 149.5kW, however towards the end of completion Mr Walsh’s confidence in Mypower and commercial solar panel systems grew and he considered using additional roof space. An order was placed on 1st June to add a further 99.28kW on the condition the full 248.78kW was completely installed, commissioned and all OFGEM applications submitted by 30th June 2015 in order to meet the next FiT deadline. Mypower’s rapid response team pulled out all the stops yet again and the system was commissioned on the 17th June and all forms submitted on 18th June 2015.
Walsh Mushrooms have expanded further constructing a new building on site. Due to the success of the solar panels on their original building, Mypower installed a second solar PV installation on their new building bringing the total to 426.81kW
A detailed monitoring system showing a live feed of solar data is displayed in reception. It provides minute by minute, inverter by inverter figures on the performance of the solar PV. This intelligent system can send data anywhere including laptops and smart phones. Should a fault arise, the system will detect this and an email will be automatically sent to Mypower and Walsh Mushrooms so the issue can be fixed promptly.
Mypower’s Ben Harrison details that the systems will produce 8.1 million units of electricity over 25 years which is the equivalent of forward buying electricity at 4.73p per kWh. This compares to the current purchase price from the supplier of more than double at 9.5p per kWh. On top of this, Walsh Mushrooms will receive the governments FiT payment.
Ben comments "It was a pleasure working with Alan, between us no stone was left unturned and the attention to detail during the discussion phase was phenomenal. The detailed preparation work has allowed the whole project to run very smoothly and efficiently in record breaking time".
Chairman Alan Walsh comments “Making any new investment into technology that is an unknown to you takes a lot of research, meeting numerous suppliers and getting a consensus of target results to be achieved. After my detailed research I always felt a roll out to a bigger system was likely. I engaged with an engineer to help me with the final selection. Ben Harrison of Mypower worked hard to gain the order, planned and installed the system with a very high degree of professionalism. We are very happy with the results to date."
Key facts and predictions - amended to September 2018 rates
- 426.81kW installed by Mypower.
- 362,473kWh of electricity produced per annum (site specific prediction from PV Sol, typically conservative by 2 to 10%).
- 120 tonnes - CO2 emissions avoided per annum.
- £50,000 - Projected first year income and savings assuming 95% of electricity is used on site.
- 15.4% - Projected first year return on capital invested, before capital allowance benefits.
- 2.5 million - Total projected income and savings over 25 years after indexation.
- 6.5 years - system payback before finance, tax and capital allowance benefits.
- 4.0 p/kWh - Equivalent forward purchase price of 8.1M units of electricity over 25 years.
The systems output exceeded first and second year predictions by over 3.3% each year.
Alan Walsh - Chairman of Walsh Mushrooms...
"Mypower’s price in the tender process was competitive and following my research on Mypower and verifying their references I awarded them the contract based on professionalism, attention to detail and price as well as their complete project management offering."