JJ Food Service has boosted its green credentials by converting a diesel lorry to electric.

The wholesaler installed an electric engine and gearbox into a diesel wagon that had reached the end of its working life. The new truck has been successfully delivering in London for about a week, and JJ's now plans to develop 10 more.

As well as emitting no exhaust fumes, the truck has saved money, claimed JJ's. A new diesel would have cost about £40,000, whereas it cost £25,000 to install the electric engine.

The converted truck was exempt from the London Congestion Charge, enabling JJ's to make significant cost savings, said MD Mustafa Kiamil.

"This is so important for the development of the 'green cause', as it shows that being green is economically viable," he said.

JJ's had agreed to build the electric truck as part of a contract to deliver food to the House of Lords. Following the success of the trial, Kiamil said he would convert other used trucks for use in London. However, they cannot be rolled out to the entire fleet because they can only travel a maximum of 80 miles before they need to be recharged.

Foodservice providers such as 3663 First For Foodservice convert used vegetable oil to fuel, but JJ's claims to be the first in foodservice to use electric power.