A detailed evaluation of the processes involved in dairy wastewater treatment

Water scarcity is a serious matter of concern among the dairy industry because reduced availability of water would lead to reduced food supply and increase in food prices. Current rules indicate that only portable water shall be used for cleaning food contact and equipment surfaces, but reconditioning and reuse of water serve to be a viable option that is accepted by present regulations. By applying combined mechanisms of ultrafiltration as well as reverse osmosis system, 47% of water can be reused, which can be furthered with application of spray-drying along with condensation procedures. Dairy wastewater treatment is been upgraded thoroughly since the concerned enterprises are looking at sustainable production as their topmost priority.

What leads to the discharge of dairy waste

The dairy industry functions by proper processing of raw milk into making dairy products like butter, yoghurt, cheese, cottage cheese, condensed milk, spray-dried milk powder, ice cream, clarified butter and  milk chocolate by using mechanisms like chilling, pasteurization and homogenization. Typically, milk processing gives by-products like whey, buttermilk and derivatives. The wastewaters given out by milk quality control lab-houses are more severe than those discharged by dairy factories owing to the presence of chemicals like chloramphenicol or sodium azide, which are known for their preserving qualities.

The mean volume of dairy wastewater is presently 1.3litres/kg of milk. So it seems that the dairy industry is one of the most polluting food industries in terms of water consumption. Dairy wastewater treatment involves numerous procedures aimed at making the wastewater reusable.

Preliminary procedures for primary treatment

 Dairy wastewater treatment begins with equalization, which reduces the amount of hydraulic overloads along with the possibility of flow-variation shock loads. This process ensures that a reasonably constant composition and volume flow are available for discharging to subsequent wastewater treatment plants. This flow or velocity of wastewater movement is then measured in gallons per minute. Then the flow control is used for maintaining the required flow rate to pump out wastewater, sludge or chemicals. It begins with detecting the desired flow rate and proper instrumentation for maintaining that flow rate. Read more at Aero Float

Coagulation and flocculation for further treatment

By coagulation, finer waste particles are clumped together to form a large particle with the use of chemicals that are known as coagulants. These chemicals help to neutralise the electrical charges or ions of the finer particles which attract each other to form a lump. This clumping aids in separating solids from the wastewater with settling, draining, filtering or skimming. Then the dairy wastewater treatment in NSW involves a few more methods like clarification, which helps in decreasing colour and suspended matter concentration present in the wastewater. Floatation helps in removing oils and greases and segregates physical solids from the wastewater. The final step followed  in dairy wastewater treatment plants is sedimentation, which is the settling of solid particles or floc from the treated wastewater to the bottom.

Though there are a few secondary steps followed, most plants use these preliminary techniques for treating dairy wastewater and making it reusable. For more details please visit this site http://www.aerofloat.com.au/dairy-effluent-wastewater-treatment-systems/

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