Fire Waters aims to throw a (Glanworth) curve at conventional cooking fuels

A London entrepreneur has set up a demonstration site for commercial cooking equipment fuelled by ethanol.

Motorists rounding the Glanworth curve on Wellington Road at night are likely puzzled about a brightly lit establishment called Fire Waters that popped up recently.

No. it’s not some kind of chic bar or quirky spa.

It’s a demonstration site for a London entrepreneur working to develop commercial cooking equipment that runs on environmentally-friendly ethanol rather than fossil fuels.

We would be able to turn a profit if we could legally sell to the general public.

Michael George

Michael George said it could be a breakthrough for commercial kitchens at a time of carbon taxes and cap and trade.

George said he rented the Glanworth building because it was a good site for testing his equipment in a restaurant-like setting and because it has high visibility.

“It allowed us to a gather data on reliability of the equipment and our ability to prepare food with 95 per cent displacement of fossil fuel.”

He said he ran the numbers on preparing food with ethanol and found it was competitive with the cost of preparing food with electricity or fossil fuels.

“We would be able to turn a profit if we could legally sell to the general public.”

The problems is that he can’t right now. The biofuel cooking equipment cannot be licensed, so George cooks in a trailer and serves the food to friends and supporters inside the building in what is essentially a “private culinary club.”

He said municipal and provincial governments have to look at revising regulations to permit the use of biofuels in commercial food preparation settings.

“Sooner or later alternative energy will be used in this way,” he said.

George said his system can be scaled up for use in restaurant kitchens or large food processing plants. It is also portable, so it could be be used in remote locations such as camps and cottages.

He is still at the prototype stage and needs investment to get the biofuel burners safety certified and automated.

A tool-and-die maker by trade, George has been building and perfecting the biofuel cookers at his west London home since 2009.

He said cooking food with biofuels made from cellulose sources such as wood, wheat straw and corn stalks is the way of the future, and that vision is in the name of his new establishment:“Our ethanol is as clear as water but burns like fire”

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