Hong Kong’s pioneering chicken waste treatment facility at risk of closure

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20th May 2024 – (Hong Kong) Hong Kong’s BSF Hatch, the only industrial-scale facility converting chicken waste into useful products such as animal feed, fertiliser, and biofuel, faces potential closure, with its government contract due to expire in August. The facility, managed by Organic Tech under the Baguio Green Group, urgently requires contract renewal to continue operations, as stated by CEO Kenny Tso.

Launched in February 2023 at Tuen Mun’s EcoPark, BSF Hatch is part of a government-led pilot project exploring innovative waste solutions. The facility utilises the larvae of black soldier flies, a method first considered in the 1970s and commercialised since 2002, to convert chicken manure. This technology has seen global applications in countries including the USA, U.K., and Singapore.

Organic Tech’s facility, which occupies 35,000 square feet, was established with a HK$27.6 million investment from the Environmental Protection Department. It currently processes approximately 16.5 tonnes of the city’s daily chicken waste output of 33 tonnes. The products of this process include high-protein animal feed and biodiesel, among others.

The BSF Hatch facility has processed over 6,000 tonnes of waste since its inception, and with modifications, it could also handle food scraps, offering a broader waste management solution. The facility imports around 1.2kg of fly eggs daily, equivalent to 24 million larvae, to manage waste from the city’s 29 poultry farms.

The Environmental Protection Department is considering alternative technologies for chicken waste treatment, including a trial of anaerobic co-digestion scheduled to begin in August. This process could complement existing efforts by generating biogas for power generation, potentially forming part of a long-term waste treatment strategy.

With Hong Kong’s landfills nearing capacity and the city generating over 3,300 tonnes of food scraps daily, the urgency to find sustainable waste solutions is pressing. The city opened its first organic waste treatment facility, O Park, in 2018, and is preparing to launch a second facility with a capacity of 300 tonnes per day.