Renewable energy firm Lumicity is reducing its role in the UK’s solar photovoltaic (PV) industry and growing its biomass business.

The British firm has sold its portfolio of solar PV projects to Conergy, one of the world’s largest downstream solar energy companies, and plans to invest in a project to build 179 biomass boilers for British food group Bernard Matthews.

The solar portfolio consists of a 166 MW pipeline of PV farms, 18 MW of which already have planning permission. Most of the projects are in the 5 MW range and the portfolio has an estimated build value of £200 million.

Conergy is planning to develop and build the solar projects as part of its expansion strategy. It recently closed a $60 million bank guarantee facility to support its growing solar project business.

Alexander Gorski, Global COO, Conergy, said: "Thanks to a dynamic energy sector and active support from councils and communities, the UK is one of the world’s fastest-growing and most interesting markets for solar. Lumicity has a strong record in the development of renewable energy projects, and the deal supports both Conergy’s power plants strategy and the expansion of its international pipeline."

Lumicity recently closed a record 30 MW transaction with Bernard Matthews, for whom it is building biomass heating systems for turkey sheds across eastern England. The projects use 151 kW and 199 kW boilers by Austrian manufacturer Herz Energietechnik.

By the end of June Lumicity had installed 68 of the 179 biomass systems. The boilers are currently fired with wood chip, but due to a change in the European Waste Incineration Directive (WDI), it is now possible to burn poultry waste. Bernard Matthews is currently trialing this by mixing the wood chip with turkey litter.

Burning poultry waste in the boilers would further reduce fuel bills and cut the cost of transport to dispose of the bedding, said Lumicity.