Table 24 Energy Efficiency of Biogas Production System and Incineration with Power Generation

Unit Incineration with power Biogas production


Biogas generated Nm3/t 100

Calorific value generated Kcal/t l,000,000a 5,000,000

Electric power generated KWh/t 150 150

Efficiency assumed % 13 26

Self-consumption of KWh/t 100 50b electricity

Net gain of energy_KWh/t_50__100_

aAssuming garbage of 1000 kcal/kg; bNot including wastewater treatment. Source: Ref. 50.

Generally, food processing does not generate chemical hazards. However, attention should be given to chlorine used for cleaning and sanitation leading to chlorinated byproducts in wastewater. If contaminated by poisonous materials or pathogens, food may change to hazardous wastes. Treatment of BMP by cement kiln is a typical example of this.

As previously discussed, incineration of food wastes together with other miscellaneous wastes is not a suitable solution because of the generation of hazardous ash containing DXNs and heavy metals; doing so also threatens food recycling efforts. A recommended option would be composting followed by the combination of biogas production and composting of the sludge.

During the past 30 years, wastewater from food processing in Japan has been significantly improved due to better wastewater treatment systems and conversion of raw materials or processes. It is notable that primary processes generating much waste have been shifted to other countries where the raw materials are produced and sometimes to developing countries where cheap labor is supplied.

Anaerobic treatment systems lost their popularity in wastewater treatment fields for failing to meet strict environmental criteria. Recently, however, these systems have regained attention because of their ability to save energy and also reflecting the development of UASB or EGSB technology.

In relation to ISO 14000, some companies have targeted and attained zero emission in their industries. However, zero emission should also cover all products, including containers and wrappers.


The authors thank Dr. H. Nakanishi, Emeritus Professor of Yamaguchi University, and Dr. I. Fukunaga, Professor of Osaka Human Science University, and other individuals for giving us valuable input.


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