A farmer from East Yorkshire has welcomed the opening of a bio-ethanol plant next year which will provide a steady revenue stream for farmers in the region.

Chris Redfearn, of Warter Priory Farms in Pocklington, intends to supply the Vivergo plant, at Salt End, Hull, to contribute to the 1.1 million tonnes of wheat a year the plant intends to turn into bio-fuel.

He said: “It will be a local market for us and it’s going to have a massive impact on this region.”

He said the proximity of the plant would also reduce the company’s haulage costs.

“There’s really nothing better for a farmer than seeing three or four lorries lined up, waiting to be loaded with your grain,” he said.

Frontier Agriculture, a grain marketing business, which has been appointed as the sole supplier for the plant, launched the Humber Gold club at a biofuels conference near York yesterday to offer a good deal to farmers in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire to encourage them to commit to supplying the plant.

The majority of farmers in the region grow wheat for animal feed, domestically and to export markets, said Andrew Flux, grain procurement manager for Humber Gold. But he said they usually have a surplus.

Mike Ayers, club manager, said: “Traditionally the region’s farmers have been delighted when a cargo ship arrives in Hull to take wheat aboard, but it’s only an intermittent event. The Vivergo plant’s requirements will be the equivalent of having a wheat-hungry vessel permanently available to them.”

The site will require 130 lorry loads, taking 4,000 tonnes to the plant every day, which is expected to produce 420 million litres of bio-ethanol for use as a fuel in road transport, as well as 500,000 tonnes of animal feed as a by-product.

Mr Flux also said it would not force farmers to change the type of wheat they grow. “The reality today is that we need one million tonnes of wheat so we’re going to take whatever we can get.

“This is going to change the UK grain market forever. Adding one million tonnes will change the market structures, prices and farmer attitudes to the way they run their business.”