Wood Pellets: How it’s made

We’ve seen lots of interest in the manufacturing process for wood pellets so we’ve put together an article on how it’s made: from definition to a detailed step-by-step manufacturing process.

According to Wikipedia, Wood pellets are a pellet fuel generally made from related material from the manufacture of wood products and furniture and construction.

Wood pellets can be used in stoves and boilers for fuel, as an a alternative to fossil fuels.

At Balcas Energy we pride ourselves with sustainably manufacturing our own wood pellets in our two plants in Enniskillen and Invergordon. The renewable energy used to manufacture the pellet fuel is generated on site thanks to the co-products of all Balcas saw-milling activities.

So how are wood pellets made?

We put the entire sustainable process in a short video animation, so you can see exactly how we make the wood pellet fuel in our plants – please click below to watch:

Our manufacturing process in detail:

  • Raw Material

    High quality virgin material is supplied as a combination of saw-milling co-products and on site chipping.

  • Initial Processing

    This is the initial process to reduce particle size and especially screen out oversized material to improve the efficiency of the drying process.

  • Drying

    Material dries at an air temperature of more than 100°C reducing moisture content by up to 50%. Indeed, all the heat and electricity is provided from our on site biomass combined heat and power stations.

  • Hammermill

    Particle size is reduced further in a dry material hammer mill, ready for pressing into ENplus® A1 quality wood pellets.

  • Pellet Press

    Material is extruded through the pellet forming die at a very high pressure to ensure the highest quality wood pellets. This process draws out the natural lignin in the wood which helps bind the material together. Moreover, occasionally a little natural binder may be added to improve the durability of the pellets.

  • Cooling and Screening

    We cool the pellets from approx. 90°C to less than 40°C – This ensures they are fully hardened and are then screened to remove all fines. Then we recycle all fines back into the manufacturing process.

  • Silos and Distribution

    Then we store all pellets in on-site silos, ready for filling our dedicated pneumatic pellet delivery trucks.

    We make sure we sample and test all pellets during production and on despatch to guarantee ENplus A1 quality standard. Wood Burning Pellets to order here

What’s the difference between different types of pellets?

Many other companies import wood pellets and then sell it as renewable fuel. This makes it very important to know why we at Balcas promote the importance of sustainable manufacturing of our wood pellets.

As we produce wood pellets locally, with high quality material from Balcas saw milling activities, our pellet fuel is 100% Carbon neutral. Why this matters?

  • Less CO2Shorter distances mean our carbon footprint is less than any other imported pellets, which can travel half way around the globe.
  • Highest quality possible of your delivered wood pellet fuel – buying from a sustainable manufacturer, who also delivers directly to your address, reduces risk of cross contamination.
  • Environment Friendly – Using green energy to make the wood pellets, by powering all our manufacturing activities within our CHP plant (Combined Heat and Power)  and the sawmill plant.

How to order your pellet fuel?

At Balcas Energy we bring people the power to choose renewable by making it more reliable 12 months a year. In doing this, our ultimate goal is to make it easier for people in business and at home to decarbonise their heat source.

So, with our 24 hours Online Shop we bring the possibility to order your pellet fuel anytime, from anywhere in the UK and Ireland: