Value-Adding Solutions for Effluent Treatment in the Fish Industry

Industrial fish processing generates a large volume of effluent that contains significant amounts of biological contamination. GEA offers the fish industry environmentally friendly process technologies and equipment for the reliable and efficient processing of effluent, as alternatives to expensive disposal. Our technologies not only reduce disposal costs, they also allow valuable constituents to be recovered.

High volume of effluent in a wide range of production stages

Fish on Ice

Large amounts of water are inevitably used in the fish processing industry, for example, for washing the raw product, for producing tinned fish or for manufacturing fish meal. Even the process of unloading ships frequently employs pumps that use water to convey the fish from the hold onto land. In addition to sea water, the pump water contains considerable quantities of fish residues, and may also contain a wide range of oil and fat residues.

Decanters for effluent processing

GEA decanters represent a robust and reliable technology for the treatment of effluent in the fish industry. After the effluent has been treated in appropriate flotation tanks, our decanters separate any remaining solids and ensure constant solid concentrations at the discharge. This solid phase can be used for fish meal production, and the treated water can either be recirculated back into the production process or discharged into the sea. This recycling and reuse dramatically reduces the effluent load and disposal costs, while a higher yield of fish oil and fish meal enables the entire process to become much more profitable.

Additional value and reduced operating costs

After the mechanical separation stage, fat and suspended solids are removed from the water phase in a ceramic microfiltration plant. GEA offers processing lines to clarify, fractionate, deash and concentrate the hydrolyzed protein solutions to generate high-grade protein powder. GEA’s machines and installations are designed to operate with optimal energy efficiency. For the production of fish meal, we use concentration installations and dryers that ensure reliable concentration and drying of the stickwater generated in the decanter stage, but that also allow the steam exhaust of the dryer to be used for heating the effluent evaporator. This can have a significant positive impact on the energy footprint of the overall processing.

Focus on energy efficiency: concentration and drying technology reduce operating costs

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Because a considerable percentage of the total operating costs incurred for processing fish and the corresponding by-products is very much determined by the energy costs which are incurred, the process of designing our machines and installations consistently focuses on their energy-efficient operation. For the production of fish meal, we therefore use concentration installations and dryers which not only ensure reliable concentration and drying of the stickwater generated in the decanter stage. Because the steam exhaust of the dryer can be used for heating the effluent evaporator, they also make a major contribution towards improving the energy footprint of our customers.

  • Using GEA equipment for efficiently processing effluent instead of expensive disposal
  • First-class decanter technology for constant solids discharge and reliably treated water
  • Lower effluent load – lower disposal costs
  • Recovery of valuable substances for higher profits
  • Evaporation and drying technology for reliable concentration and drying of stickwater
  • Energy-efficient operation thanks to heating using dryer exhaust