The Peake family is passionate about conserving this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in which they all live and work and their long-term strategy has always included investment in green practices in order to be responsible custodians of the countryside, and to create a robust and sustainable business to pass on to future generations. This philosophy goes back over 70 years to when Bill and Devora Peake were founder members of the Soil Association and practiced organic husbandry, way ahead of their time. The company has now received a number of awards over the years in recognition of its green initiatives, the latest of which is the international AD and Biogas Industry Award in 2019.
Gro Fertiliser is one of the fantastic results of this passion for conservation and green energy production and the company has already been enjoying its benefits in all areas of the business over the last few years. It has moved away wherever possible from the use of traditional fertilisers and Gro is now used on the two championship Golf Courses, in all of the orchards and on the arable land.
Since 2012 the business has invested over £5 million in the creation of renewable and sustainable sources of energy. The major investment has been in a 1.5-megawatt anaerobic digestion biogas plant which uses pomace from the Copella factory, maize and fruit bi products from the farm to produce a biogas which is converted to provide green electricity and heat to Stoke by Nayland Hotel, Boxford Farms and the Copella juice plant.
The digestate from the AD Plant is then dried and in turn provides a rich organic fertiliser for the golf courses, crops and orchards, and is also packed into bags as “Gro” fertiliser to be sold to consumers – so the whole process is a perfect circular economy……
Boxford Farms also invested in six 200kW biomass boilers which are powered by wood chip from the golf courses and orchards and from a local ancient woodland. This wood is chipped and dried using surplus heat from the AD plant. The heat from the biomass boilers is used on the soft fruit crops in the glasshouses on the farm.
The company’s investment in an AD Plant, Solar panels, Biomass Boilers and other sustainable sources of energy will continue to provide secure savings in electricity and heating costs for the next 20 to 25 years which will in turn help to provide profits for reinvestment into the business.
The farms will continue to grow world class fruit whilst using sustainable and innovative methods of maximising production with minimum waste.
Planning permission has been granted to build another 10 eco lodges adjacent to the 5 in existence, which will accommodate another 70 guests in luxurious self-catered accommodation in stunning Constable Country. Like the current lodges, these will all feature solar panels and air source heat pumps.
There are also plans to build another 9 hole par 3 golf course which will be ideal for beginners and will help to encourage more people to take up golf and enjoy exercising in this beautiful environment.
The Stoke by Nayland Resort intends to continue with its strategy of maximizing its resources whilst maintaining as a priority a strong respect for the natural environment so that the venue will attract increasing numbers of discerning visitors to the area. This will help to secure a robust, innovative and sustainable business for the next generation.
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