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Biomass wood pellet prices - bagged and bulk

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  • I understand what you're saying about the ENPlus certification providing guidelines for net calorific values. However, if you have two products at the same tonne price and one offers 5kwh/kg and the other provides 4.6kwh/kg, its clearly wrong to default to the minimum standard value when the former provides a whopping 8% energy cost saving. Calorific values should be measured and openly displayed by every supplier. You mention that WHE provides a comparison table, yet they don't even compare energy values and energy costs, which is fundamentally wrong because at the end of the day this is an energy they're selling.

    You're right , the market is opening up. I know the Premier Fuel owner and he is very much for full transparency in the market place. Dalby Firewood is also diversifying into pellets and he's for full transparency. Compare this to Billington who want nothing to do with being compared. I rang Billington and the salesman spent the best part of half the conversation absolutely tearing apart Brites and how they can cause thousands of pounds of damage to boilers. Imagine the confusion this causes!

    at the end of the day we need legislation, governed by Ofgem, whereby suppliers have to provide up to date product/brand specific specifications for their products. I've chatted with Ofgem and they state that this would have to be purely voluntary at this stage, so we're many years away from a good solution. WPG is a good solution, probably the best currently available, and it would be unethical me to say anything bad about them because I am at the moment coding an alternative solution with an extra layer of transparency that reflects delivery dates, delivery costs, product reviews and also compares firewood, briquettes and woodchip.
    Biomass / Green Aficionado
  • edited 29 January 2016 at 9:50AM
    trueab1trueab1 Forumite
    5 posts
    edited 29 January 2016 at 9:50AM
    Calorific value in wood pellets is discussable and confusing thing. For example, some companies are lookig for producing "white" pellets, which are very popular in Italy. For "white" pellets you need to use specific wood species, with no bark. The value will be, say, 4.5 kcal/kg and ash could be <0.5% (that's "Premium" quality which doesn't exist, so basicaly it's an A1).
    On the other hand, some companies could use slab wood as well, adding some bark into their pellets. Bark allows you to get more value, so you could get around 4.8 kcal/kg. But they will look darker and ash will be <0.7% (which is still A1 quality).
    And the calorific value can't be sustainable. It will always move here and there, getting lower or higher time to time. It depends on many things. So producers can't say that they will always provide 5 kcal/kg. They won't.
  • Regarding variability in the calorific content of pellets, I have chatted with Brites, who conduct regular tests of their pellets, and the data shows that the NCV is stable. And in any case, suppliers should be regularly testing calorific content because at the end of the day it's an energy that they're selling. With all due respect calorific content is a very simple concept to understand and simple to measure (I have a friend that works within this field of analysis), what makes it confusing is boiler efficiency and the reliability of stated values from manufacturers and how this can significantly impact upon the eventual energy cost.
    Biomass / Green Aficionado
  • Yes, it is easy to measure. But once again, it depends on many things.
    For example, you can use whole wood trunks, then debark them for production. Therefore your pellets will have no bark, no additives, no sand, not whatsoever. Ash will be low, and NCV is stable and regular.
    You also could be using some other raw material with additive bark. It increases bad additives, makes ash content higher a bit, but it does increase NCV.
    It depends on the production line and volumes of it. The bigger company is, the easier production process they want to get.
    At the end of the day every producer will have its own pros and cons.
  • cancuniacancunia Forumite
    97 posts
    Tenth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Has anyone tried BB pellets for heating? One thing I like about WHE is that they post feedback, good or bad. I'm tempted to get some BB pellets, but noticed today that they have some poor feedback on the dust and stability of these pellets. For a boiler / stove without glass windows this is probably fine. The ENPlus cert number is the same as for Platinum Plus, so they come from the same place, perhaps BB are ones that don't quite make the grade?
  • cancuniacancunia Forumite
    97 posts
    Tenth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    I just noticed that AKZ pellets are at a special price of £205. If it's your first order at WHE and want 5% discount, look for my earlier posts for a code.
  • thozzathozza Forumite
    248 posts
    Ninth Anniversary 100 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    Just noticed that Liverpool Wood Pellets have reduced the price of Balcas Brites to £239/T which is (as far as I can see) the lowest price for any of the UK manufactured pellets, maybe the proliferation of imports is finally having an effect?
  • WPGWPG Forumite
    24 posts
    A pallet of Brites from Liverpool Wood Pellets would have set you back £302 yesterday!

    They've reduced their own branded pellets from £275 to £245 today as well
  • WPGWPG Forumite
    24 posts
    thozza wrote: »
    Just noticed that Liverpool Wood Pellets have reduced the price of Balcas Brites to £239/T which is (as far as I can see) the lowest price for any of the UK manufactured pellets, maybe the proliferation of imports is finally having an effect?
    I like to think it's all down to !! :wink:
  • cancuniacancunia Forumite
    97 posts
    Tenth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    I agree that the WPG has brought a lot more focus to the pellet prices, keep up the good work! It would be nice to get the historical data too when you have time to implement it.
    I checked back to the price I was paying for Brites the 2 winters previous to this, in 2014 I was paying £240 for a Tonne, although that took a lot of bargaining & in fact the load I got was short of a few bags, maybe accidentally as they came loose in a van.
    What we have now is a much more level playing field and an opportunity to compare experiences.
    On the latter, my pallet of AKZ arrived on Tuesday, following an order to WHE on Friday. They are really well stacked compared to the other pellets I've had which probably contributed to there being no tears on the packaging. Hopefully they burn as good as they look!
    As for the Baltic pellets' quality, I'm using up some bags of Brites that I had left over, they seem to produce a little less ash than the Premium Plus, but just about the same amount of soot on my boiler glass.
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