The plant consists of two natural gas-fuelled boilers, designed to generate heat and electricity for the company’s 24-hour production process. It represents the largest single investment in the company since its launch. Scheduled to become operational in March 2020, the development would be key to successfully securing a sustainable energy supply, the business claimed.
The project brings parent company Tata Chemicals Europe’s total investment in British Salt to £25m since 2015. It follows several high-profile investments carried out throughout 2018 at British Salt to ensure it offers a comprehensive portfolio of 21st century-relevant high-purity salt products for the long term.
Projects delivered in 2018 included the commissioning of British Salt’s first new brine borehole in more than five years at its Warmingham brine fields. The company also replaced one of the 37-tonne evaporation plant heat exchangers that is vital to its plant’s six-stage evaporation process.
Transforming the speed and quality of its packing operations, British Salt installed a high-speed pure dried vacuum (PDV) pack line in 2018. Alongside this, it upgraded the packing facilities for its water treatment products.
The business has just completed the fourth year in a five-year £5m investment programme designed to upgrade its brine purification plant, which helps ensure the high quality of its salt.
“Our 50th anniversary year heralds a major milestone in our future-proofing plant investment initiative,” said Ladan Iravanian, general manager, salt & sodium bicarbonate at Tata Chemicals Europe.
“Undoubtedly 2018 was an exceptionally busy year for our business, as we continued to invest millions of pounds in our facilities to ensure that we’re in great shape to deliver for our customers over the next 50 years and beyond. However, 2019 will see further, unprecedented high-profile investment in the site and its people.
“Our Cheshire salt reserves will last for the next 300 years – so we have a strong resource base upon which to build a sustainable future.”
Iravanian said the next phase of British Salt’s pack line investment and the final phase of its brine purification plant renewal were scheduled for completion before the end of this year.
British Salt’s products – manufactured at Middlewich in Cheshire – include table and cooking salt, salts for use as ingredients in food and animal feed, and salts for water treatment and purification.
British Salt produces more than half of the UK’s salt and has supplied more than 30m tonnes of high-purity dried vacuum salt since 1969. It has produced millions of tons of industrial and technical salt grades supplied to UK-based and global industries.
The company was acquired by Tata Chemicals Europe in 2011 and continues to be an integral part of the Tata Chemicals Europe business.