Big Hanna in the northern lights north of the Arctic Circle

Almost as far north as you can come in Sweden and 250 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle lies Abisko National Park. This is also home to STF’s northernmost facility.

Magic all year round

There is something magical that attracts in Abisko. The location north of the Arctic Circle creates a truly unique environment. In the summer the midnight sun is shining twenty four hours a day and when September approaches the beautiful vibrant autumn colors set the mountains aflame. During the dark winter months the whole sky is bright as the Northern Lights dance with their green, pink and red colors.

Visitors from all over the world

The STF Abisko mountain station is beautifully situated and dramatically framed by Lapporten’s characteristic u-silhouette: The Abisko Alps, Mount Nuolja and the Great Lake Torneträsk. The mountain station has evolved from having its peak season in summer and a relatively small number of visitors in the winter to become a tourist magnet during winter as well. Nowadays, visitors from all over the world come to Abisko to experience the Swedish Arctic and, above all, the Northern Lights. The experience is even more enhanced when tourists explore the mountains with unique features such as Kungsleden, Lapporten, STF Aurora Sky Station, Torneträsk, Nuolja mountain and Abisko National Park.

More tourists – more food waste

In 2004, STF Abisko mountain station installed its first Big Hanna. With the increased number of tourists the amount of food waste also increase. Hence, the machine installed in 2004 has been going at its maximum capacity – perhaps even a bit more. By 2017, it was therefore time to install a new and bigger Big Hanna – the T240 model.The Abisko mountain station’s location in the middle of the wilderness makes it natural for environment and environmental work to be in focus and the station is of course environmentally certified. To transport food waste to Kiruna, the region’s capital, which is 1.5 hours and 100 kilometers away, therefore becomes no alternative. The only right thing to do in a place like this is to compost the food waste on location.

Big Hanna T240

Big Hanna was transported to Abisko and a few days later our own Cecilia Ek traveled up to install the compost and hold a rundown with the staff. Sweden is a long country and after flying up to Kiruna, the journey continued along the E10 motorway towards Narvik, actually located in Norway, but on the same route. The road led through wonderful mountain sceneries on a crystal clear day at minus 20 ° C. During the trip we spotted plenty of reindeer.

Premiere for the new compost

Once the machine was in place and the standard installation test had been completed, Cecilia held a briefing on the machine and how its biological process works with the premises department. The interest was big and the questions were many. There was also information for the kitchen staff concerning the routine for food waste, how to sort it and what waste that can be composted. After the meeting everyone went together to the compost and inaugurated it by putting the day’s waste in the machine.     The new composting machine will serve Abisko, which is STF’s largest mountain facility with 377 beds. The Kungsleden restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, coffee, dinner and à la carte. The restaurant is KRAV labeled with two stars and has the ambition to use as much local produce as possible.

Experience Abisko and the light

On the nearby mountain Nuolja lies the STF Aurora Sky Station, which is the perfect place to experience the Northern Lights. The station is 900 meters above sea level and there is no other light or sound that interferes with the magnificent experience. The UN appointed 2015 “The Year of Light” and for the occasion Lonely Planet listed the top ten places in the world to experience light. Aurora Sky Station in Abisko was named the world’s best spot for experiencing the Northern Lights.

If you ever pass by northern Sweden, do not miss the opportunity to visit Abisko – a very beautiful place on earth that also nurtures nature by composting its food waste! Read more about STF Abisko Arctic Station: Read more about Aurora Sky Station: Read more about the Northern Lights:

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