Spen Farm Setup

Spen Farm, University of Leeds & CIEL

Location: Yorkshire, England

Year: 2021

Type: Pig

Spen Farm is a farm owned by the University of Leeds, featuring a wide range of soil types, growing a diverse mixture of crops alongside the farm’s 660 pigs. Spen Farm has recently undergone an extensive overhaul, which included the installation of an N2 Unit to aid slurry management from the farm’s pig production system and bring the farm’s operations in line with the university’s goal of achieving net-zero. 

In collaboration with CIEL (the UK’s Livestock Innovation Centre), livestock numbers and facilities at Spen Farm have been increased and upgraded to align operations to that of a more typical commercial pig operation. This project has led Spen Farm to become the UK’s largest and most advanced facility for research into pig nutrition, behaviour, welfare & health, and production systems – National Pig Centre. With huge changes in the UK’s pig industry expected to operate at net-zero, operations at Spen Farm provide a perfect opportunity for the wider industry to observe the practicalities of how technology can be integrated into farm systems and contribute to the sustainable shift.  

With an N2 unit installed at Spen Farm, pig slurry is collected from the barns and treated with N2’s plasma technology.  The installation at Spen Farm showcases the applicability of N2’s technology on pig farms, enabling slurry emissions to be effectively reduced, along with generating a complete, nitrogen-enriched fertiliser available for the surrounding fields.