Oat-drink giant moving to Peterborough Oatly donate soil excavated from new factory site to city rugby club to create new pitches

Oatly is to donate 5000 tonnes of soil from the site of its new factory to Peterborough Rugby Union Football Club (PRUFC) to give the club four new pitches.

By Ben Jones
Monday, 25th April 2022, 4:04 pm
Updated Monday, 25th April 2022, 4:16 pm
One of the new pitches the Oatly soil donation helped to create.
One of the new pitches the Oatly soil donation helped to create.

Oatly, the world’s original and largest oat drink company, is in the process of completing a move to the Peterborough Gateway site, at Alwalton Hill, with production set to get underway from its new factory in 2023.

As part of the building process, thousands of tonnes of soil was excavated from the site and the company decided to donate 5000 tonnes of this to PRUFC to enable them to create four new rugby pitches, providing top notch facilities for the hundreds of men, women, boys and girls who play at the club.

The soil donation has helped replenish and relevel the rugby club pitches and means that the soil, which is often a waste product in construction, is being reused in a sustainable way and is part of Oatly’s commitment to the local community.

The first game on the new pitches took place on place on Saturday (April 23)- the highly anticipated Derby Day between Peterborough and Kettering. Peterborough romped to a stunning 62-5 win in front of a strong home crowd and secured 4th place in Midlands Division One East table.

The opening of Oatly’s UK factory will coincide with 100 years of play for PRUFC, and both the club and Oatly hope to continue to cooperate in the future.

Oatly is building a factory in the UK to support its ongoing mission to drive a systemic shift in the food system towards plant-based diets. The new factory, once open, will produce 300 million litres of oat drink per year and create around 200 new jobs.

Andrew Burgess, President of the Peterborough Rugby Union Football Club, said: “We are delighted to accept the donation of soil from the Oatly factory to rebuild and expand our rugby pitches.

"As a non-profit organisation we rely on donations to keep the club functioning. This donation will benefit the hundreds of boys and girls, men and women who use our facilities every single day. I look forward to seeing how we can work with Oatly in the future and, who knows, we might start offering plant-based coffees within the club house!”

Ishen Paran, General Manager at Oatly UK, added: “Ahead of our factory launch next year, we are really excited to have the chance to start supporting the local area. It has been great to see the soil repurposed to support the PRUFC in this way, enabling the club to expand, whilst also respecting our planet’s resources as we lay down roots in the UK.”