5 top tips for wastewater treatment
By Dave Walker, Commercial Director at Detectronic
Having worked with a wide variety of food processing and manufacturing companies over the last three decades, it’s safe to say there’s not much I’ve not seen when comes to wastewater treatment!
The process and manufacture of food & drink is a multi-million pound industry. It’s also a highly competitive sector where every second and every penny count. It’s vital that your operation is able to function effectively and efficiently 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. As such, ensuring best practice right across the board is key. However, it never ceases to amaze me how many businesses simply have no idea what’s happening with their wastewater treatment.
It’s either ignored until something goes wrong i.e. the agreed consent licence is breached or there is a problem with a specific production line or process. And that’s often too late.
As such, I’ve put together my top five tips for implementing and achieving best practice for your wastewater treatment, irrespective of what you process or manufacture.
- Knowledge is power. Consult with a wastewater monitoring specialist and undertake a short-term (4-6 weeks) monitoring project to understand exactly what’s happening with your wastewater. The specialist should devise a bespoke project to look at your wastewater treatment and measure a variety of different parameters from level and flow to Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) and Fats, Oils and Greases (FOGs) and how they could be adversely affecting your overall process.
- Analyse the data. The monitoring project should deliver a comprehensive report based on the data gathered via the monitoring equipment. An expert wastewater data analyst will be able to interpret the data and pick up on any spikes or anomalies and provide you with a precise picture of wastewater treatment. You’ll be able to see any issues and draw up a plan to address them.
- Keep it clean! Most wastewater monitoring projects we complete for food processors highlight the huge importance of a consistent and effective cleaning regime within the factory or processing unit. Many problems with a breach of consent have been rectified simply by improving or adding to the existing cleaning procedures. This, in turn, enhances best practice amongst the entire workforce.
- Boost productivity. Implementing wastewater monitoring can have a positive effect on the entire productivity of your factory. It will undoubtedly help you to improve and inform current policies and procedures which will lead to a much more efficient and economical process.
- Achieve cost savings – yes, you can save money! If you don’t know what’s going on with your wastewater you will almost certainly be wasting valuable money on raw materials. What’s more, you could be fined for any pollutions as a result of not meeting your consent agreement. Line closures cost money. Operational delays cost money. Missed orders cost money. Pollutions damage the environment AND your corporate reputation. So, stop throwing money down the drain now and implement wastewater monitoring to ensure your process meets its respective compliance and regulations AND achieves cost-savings. Your entire business will benefit and thank you for this.