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Utilizing Brewery Wastewater (all solids side-streamed) in a Greenhouse setting

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  • Utilizing Brewery Wastewater (all solids side-streamed) in a Greenhouse setting

    Hello again you amazing humans!!
    Ian here again from Ward1BrewingCo, Rural on Septic. But the bed is not big enough for our added 1000-3000l/day extra.
    We are finally under construction outside at least!!
    Alright, so with great help from Lake of Bays Brewery, we have solved the hauling issue for out wastewater. I have always gardened, and have rencenty put in a small hoop-house. That got us thinking, there must be a way to utilize the brewery waste water either in a hydroponic or aquaponic set up.
    All grain, protein, trub and yeast are going to a local farmer anyway. After some intense filtering we are hoping there is a way we can do this.
    We also have a great company helping us out with the pre-treatment of our wastewater : Enereau, they are fantastic. But at the end of the day if the water doesn't need all the pre-treatment and since we would have to haul that clean water off anyway, is there not a way to use it on site? We are also a smokehouse and we have use for many water hungry veggies we will need anyway.
    If anyone has any help to offer please do, all advice welcome!
    We are currently in talks with a local university as well as the governing body as to the requirements.
    Thanks so much,
    Ian Leis
    Ian Leis
    Brewer/ Owner

  • #2
    Well, this is a huge topic and to start you'd need to get with the local water quality governing board to see what they will allow you disperse either above or below ground. I'm sure there are some maximum levels for nitrogen, TDS, TSS, pH, BOD, and COD.

    I'm in California and run a 5BBL brewpub and we treat all the brewery waste water and then use it for landscape irrigation. We have to meet some TIGHT guidelines but we've been able to do it consistently with our system. We run through three aerobic digesting tanks in a cascading setup and then through filtration down to 5 microns. On the way to the final tank that holds the water for irrigation, the water is UV sterilized. That final tank has ozone constantly circulating through it to keep clean.

    Truly, I wish I could just dump it all down the sewer because it's time consuming to be a water engineer on top of being the brewer but it makes us feel good that we're not wasting a bunch of water that could otherwise be used beneficially. We have regular droughts in So Cal and I live in a rural area up in the mountains and the only water we have is what falls on the mountain every year via rain and snow pack, so recycling it makes a lot of sense for us.

    BTW, "intense filtering" won't do much to lower the BOD and COD and they will most likely be the items your local water board will be focused on.

    Idyllwild Brewpub
    Idyllwild, CA