BioHiTech America teams up with Natural Systems to convert food waste to energy

BioHiTech America, a US-based technology company which develops data driven solutions for food waste disposal, has partnered with New Jersey-headquartered water management specialist Natural Systems Utilities to convert commercial food waste to energy.

The firms will also be working with New Jersey-based utility specialist Ridgewood Green RME and the village of Ridgewood. They will be testing a process that will allow BioHiTech's Eco-Safe Digester to digest, tank, and deliver the effluent from its Eco-Safe Digesters to anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities anywhere in the world.

BioHiTech's Eco-Safe Digester utilises an aerobic digestion process to convert food waste to grey water, also referred to as effluent.

Typically the effluent is discharged safely into the sewage system and individual wastewater treatment facilities to treat it with other sanitary waste.

This new process will tank the unit's effluent allowing for transportation to an anaerobic digestion plant where biogas can be captured and used to create renewable energy.

The Eco-Safe Digester performs the hydrolysis stage of anaerobic digestion at the point of origin.

According to the firm, because the aerobic digestion process begins with the breakdown of solid organics to a liquid slurry, the effluent is able to be easily pumped and transported, arriving at the AD facility in a "pre-digested" condition allowing for efficient feedstock transfer and eliminating the need for costly processing at the AD facility.

"In a continual effort to offer our customers cost-effective solutions for food waste disposal, we have developed a process for those who want their food waste delivered to anaerobic digesters so that it can be converted to clean energy," said Frank Celli, CEO of BioHiTech Global.

"Early trials to receive the material and feed it to the digester have proven successful," said Paul Knowles, director of technical operations of Natural Systems Utilities. "We are working with BioHiTech to expand the process so that they can offer this solution to new and existing customers."

This new process is currently being tested at a high-volume supermarket in New Jersey and transported to an anaerobic digestion facility operated by the village of Ridgewood, New Jersey, at its water pollution control facility.

Ridgewood Green RME, owns a 20,000 gallon per day liquid waste receiving facility and a 240kW digester biogas power plant that is co-located at the anaerobic digestion facility. Natural Systems Utilities operates those components of the project owned by Ridgewood Green RME.

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