Family-run meat company targets resource efficiency

© Chinnapong, #190172816, 2019, source:


Manufacture of food, beverages and tobacco
Investment cost:
High cost
Payback time:
Payback: 36 Months
High cost
Size of company:
Medium (less than 250)
Advancement in applying resource efficiency measures:

Cold truths about hot water 

  • Meat production company targets high refrigeration and hot water costs
  • A new heat exchanger channels waste heat from freezers towards the factory's hot water needs 

Ballon Meats, a family-run company, has been producing various types of meats of the highest quality from their factory in Co. Carlow, Ireland. The company, which started 35 years ago, has grown into a world-class plant, processing cattle, sheep and pigs. Recently, Ballon Meats has started looking at improving energy and water efficiency.

Due to the nature of the business, refrigeration and hot-water generation make up the largest share of the electricity bill. To tackle this cost, the managers decided to instal a compressor desuperheater. This tubular heat exchanger was installed as part of a major refrigeration upgrade and now pre-heats the boiler feed water from approx 13° C to 45° C. It takes the waste heat from the freezers and heats the water, an effective way of channelling and reusing energy. 

Key impact

Oil costs for hot water preparation have been reduced by an estimated 40 %. Electricity costs are also lower as the refrigeration system does not have to work as hard as before.

EPA Green Business. 2016, 'Greening your business ... How much can you save?', page 19

Green Business Programme, link:

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