WATERY waste from cheese is going to be used to keep thousands of homes toasty and warm.
When milk is being churned into cheese the curd separates from the whey, and is usually thrown away.
But now the Wensleydale Creamery has announced that they will supply thousands of gallons of whey that can be converted into methane.
Wensleydale cheese was a favourite of Wallace and his dog Gromit so the movie pair would no doubt applaud the plant for its cracking idea.
The creamery, in the Yorkshire Dales, will send the waste product to the Leeming Biogas plant near Northalleron, North Yorkshire.
At the plant the whey will be produced into methane gas, with billions of bacteria breaking down the waste.
The process is called anerobic digestion, and is the same as what happens in a cow’s stomach when they digest.
Any whey that is left over from the process won’t go to waste, as it will be spread on fields to help improve the soil.
At full capacity the Leeming Biogas plant can provide enough gas to heat 4,000 homes from the crumbly cheese waste.
The gas produced by the cheese would be a renewable “green gas” and help to crack down on carbon emissions.
By using the gas to burn in home boilers, it avoids the whey being dumped into a landfill and slowly releasing methane into the atmosphere.
David Hartley, of the Wenselydale Creamery, told The Observer: “The whole process of converting local milk to premium cheese and then deriving environmental and economic benefit from the natural by-products is an essential part of our business plan as a proud rural business.”