Biogas-powered Swiss Cheese Production

Cindy Zimmerman

PA Ag WolffThe Fairview Swiss Cheese Plant in Pennsylvania soon will be running in part on biogas made from its own waste products.

The plant broke ground last week on the renewable energy project, which converts food waste into gas, according to a release from the office of Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary Dennis Wolff.

“The Fairview Swiss Cheese Plant is just one more exciting example of how Pennsylvanians are developing ways to tap into a growing renewable energy market,” said. Wolff during the ceremony. “This project will not only save the company money on energy bills, it will help decrease overall dependency on foreign oil.”

Wolff said this renewable energy project falls in line with Governor Edward G. Rendell’s Energy
Independence Strategy, which is designed to cut the commonwealth’s reliance on imported oil and support development of homegrown energy sources. For more information on the strategy, visit

The $2.2 million project involves constructing an anaerobic digester that will use cheese whey from the plant and cone batter waste from the Joy Cone Co. to make 40 million cubic feet of biogas annually – the equivalent of 28 million cubic feet of natural gas.