The “hog” is the key player in Sky Valley’s wood waste recycling program. Not anything like the farm animal with the same name, our hog is a large mechanical wood chipper that turns our wood waste into hog fuel. The name hog possibly comes from the Norwegian word “hogge,” meaning “chopped” or “hacked.”
Hog fuel is created from wood waste and can be used as an alternative fuel to produce heat and power, replacing non-renewable fossil fuels such as oil and natural gas. Hog fuel can also be used in horse riding arenas, farm animal pens, dog runs and to build trail paths and temporary roads.
Every day, Sky Valley collects containers of wood scrap; weighs it and then loads the scrap onto a conveyor belt that feeds into the hog. The wood scraps of varying sizes are chopped into uniformly sized wood chips (hog fuel) that are then stored in semi trailers on the premises.
We also have a dust collection system to gather and store all the sawdust generated in our daily operations. This dust collection program not only generates hog fuel but also improves the air quality throughout the plant.
The hog fuel that Sky Valley generates is given to a local dry kiln company who uses it instead of a fossil fuel to power its business year-round. Three to four semi trailers are delivered to this company every month. This is wood waste that used to be destined for a landfill or was burned, adding greenhouse gases to the environment.
We track all of the wood waste generated by each department throughout the manufacturing plant, and have a system to calculate $/day of wood waste by each department. This waste tracking system helps us to better manage wood product inventories and increase wood product yield to decrease wood waste.