Devizes waste management company Grist Group has announced a number of investments in the business, including new plant, machinery and land as part of an expansion scheme.

The locally-based business recently acquired the Chivers Yard on Williams Road to house and maintain its fleet of 70 waste management vehicles, as well as installing one of the UK’s largest baling machines to compress recycled material so that it can be transported more efficiently.

The waste management operations of the group are conducted by its subsidiary company, Wiltshire Waste (Recycling) Limited, while the Grist Group is also involved in metal reclamation, as well as commercial vehicle servicing, vehicle recovery and accident repairs.

Last year it installed a materials recovery facility to process waste more effectively into materials that can be recycled, such as glass, plastics and cardboard, and those that can be recovered and used in non-landfill technologies, such as renewable energies.

Currently, between 70 per cent and 80 per cent of materials are recycled, and the company is targeting zero of its waste going to landfill.

The company has invested £3.2 million as part of the project.

The Grist Group, which employs 140 people, currently generates a turnover of £10 million, which it is hoping will grow through the investment. The company was founded by Devizes businessman Nigel Grist 40 years ago and works with many businesses and public sector organisations across Wiltshire and the wider South West.

Group finance manager Bruce Ponting said: “We have a target of nought per cent of our waste going to landfill and the investment in this equipment is integral to that project.

“About 80 per cent of the waste that comes to us is recycled and, due to the introduction of the baling machine, we are able to transport that material more efficiently.

“The residual material, also baled using the new equipment allowing maximum efficiency for transportation to energy recovery sites. Reducing our waste to landfill helps minimise the environmental impact and maximise profit margins.”