The world’s first vegan football team Forest Green Rovers is used to getting a regular beefing from visiting fans.
In fact, the ‘dirty vegans’ insult hurled from the away stand has become a badge of honour for the team – after coming top of League Two and bagging trophy gold, FGR is warning all League One fans planning a visit to Nailsworth that they’d better like hummus.
Since Dale Vince took the team under his wing in 2010, he’s pioneered FGR as the first to play on an organic pitch inside a stadium sustained by green energy.
But Vince’s latest innovation might leave away fans feeling perhaps a little teased when they turn up at the team’s Nailsworth, Glos, venue this coming season…
Every time visitors spend a penny, their efforts will be turned into clean water and fertiliser!
The drain brainwave is provided in a new partnership between FGR and Nijhuis Saur Industries ahead of the 2022/23 season – using tech trialled in space.
“Their space mission-inspired closed loop technology will convert fans’ urine into clean water and a concentrated fertiliser product, both of which can be used to keep the pitch in top condition,” a team spokesman told Stroud Times.
“The award-winning modular units will treat wastewater from the urinals through on-site physical treatment. The modules also have the potential for further treatment options of wastewater from the toilets and handwashing facilities to produce compost and flush water.”
Among fans of the team, the move is going down a treat. Follower Adrian Cutler said the idea was a “new twist on extracting the urine”.
Says Henry Staelens, CEO, FGR: “The Away Fan Zone is a major focus for us over the summer as we head towards League One, where we will see a sizeable increase of fans at The New Lawn – we’re very pleased to have Nijhuis on board as part of that”.
The concept behind the system is space-based technology, where three separate wastewater streams – grey, yellow and black from handwashing, urinals and toilets respectively – are converted into flush water, irrigation water, fertiliser, and compost.
This process can also be configured for biogas and electricity. The result is a system that closes the loop between water treatment and water supply, to provide three of the basic necessities for life: water, food, and good sanitation.