McCulla and Lidl Northern Ireland partner to operate waste-to-energy transport

Chilled and frozen logistics company McCulla has announced the purchase of 10 IVECO S-WAY trucks as part of its waste-to-energy transport model in partnership with Lidl Northern Ireland.

Eight out of the 10 trucks will immediately go into operation, powered by biomethane from food waste collected from 41 Lidl stores across Northern Ireland.

McCulla AD plantMcCulla, which has been producing biomethane gas at its anaerobic digestion (AD) plant in Lisburn since 2017, will roll out its gas-powered fleet in ‘quiet mode’ for early morning and evening deliveries – reducing carbon emissions by up to 95 per cent.

The trucks were supplied by dealer NI Trucks, and feature 460 horsepower engines and front-axle air suspension systems. 

The fleet covers 2,300 miles per day and delivers food to more than 300,000 weekly customers across Lidl Northern Ireland’s network of stores.

The Lidl fleet will also include Schmitz Cargobull ‘V7 SKO Cool’ refrigerated semi-trailers fitted with Carrier Transicold Vector HE 19 units. The trailers are also equipped with solar panels, supplied by fleet technology company Genie Insights.

Ashley McCulla, Chair of McCulla, said: “We have been producing all of our own electricity since 2017 from our anaerobic digester (AD) plant in Lisburn with a goal of using the energy to power our trucks.

“Working with Lidl Northern Ireland, we have delivered on that ambition and we are honoured to be part of a real first for Northern Ireland. We’re proud to see our new green fleet finally roll out across the region.”

Rod Hawkins, NI Trucks Heavy Truck Business Development Manager, said: “We are pleased to have played our part in making history here in Northern Ireland and to put the first of the new IVECO S-WAY NP CNG trucks into service.

“The feedback from drivers has been very positive in that once they are behind the wheel the controls and driving experience are the same as a diesel but just a little quieter."

Conor Boyle, Regional Director of Lidl Northern Ireland said: “This partnership with McCulla underlines our commitment to developing sustainable and innovative solutions which create real impact in every area of our business.

“From using renewable electricity to power our stores to advancing our Plastic Pledge and introducing numerous in-store initiatives to reduce waste, Lidl Northern Ireland is leading the way.

"We are thrilled to now be the first supermarket retailer to successfully integrate the first waste-to-energy sustainable transport model.

“We’re proud to work alongside McCulla to pave the way for the sector and for Northern Ireland in driving a cleaner, greener economy through responsible business practice.”