This chapter is based around the fact that the olive oil industry is in continuous growth due to its nutritious and economic importance, particularly for Mediterranean countries. This is accompanied by vast waste generation from different olive oil technologies (traditional and pressing decanting processes). The wastewater is mainly characterized by a high degree of organic pollution, polyphones, and aromatics forming inhibitor or toxic substances, which constitute a serious environmental problem for soil, rivers, and groundwater.
The great variety of components found in liquid waste and solid waste requires different appropriate technologies to eliminate those that have harmful effects on the environment. From an economic perspective it is important to develop profitable uses for the final waste product such as organic fertilizer, soil conditioner, and livestock feed.
The optimal disposal and management of olive oil mill waste should be viewed within a multidisciplinary integrated frame that comprises specific procedures such as extraction by decanter centrifuge, liquid/solid waste treatments, aerobic bioremediation and composting, enrichment of waste with fungal/yeast protein, drying and gasification in fluidized moving beds, recovery of orujo oil, and recovery of energy and combustible gases.
Prospective researches should take into consideration the new advances in biotechnology, treatment reactors, control, new products and processes, composting from different wastes mixtures, all for the service of minimizing the impact on the environment, and reducing the use of valuable natural and living resources within the course of sustainable development.
Was this article helpful?