Innovation: Recovery, Recycling, Resource. Valorisation Of Olive Mill Effluents By Recovering High Added Value Bio-Products.

Last update: 29.06.2013
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vegetable oil‚ clean technology‚ waste use‚ industrial waste water‚ edible fat‚
Olive oil production generates huge quantities of waste that may have great environmental impact because of their high phytotoxicity, toxicity against aquatic organisms and suppression of soil microorganisms.Olive mill wastewater (OMWW) is composed of the olive fruit vegetation water, water used for washing and treating, and a portion of the olive pulp and residual oil. The polluting load of OMWW is caused by its high chemical oxygen demand (COD), biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), low pH, high concentration in recalcitrant compounds such as lignin and tannins, and long-chain fatty acids. Phenolic compounds, abundant in OMWW, are mainly responsible for its phytotoxicity and difficult biological degradation.The current lack of appropriate alternative technologies makes the uncontrolled disposal of OMWW a serious environmental problem all around the Mediterranean area. Feasible solutions, both from technical and economical points of view, are not yet available. There is an urgent need for guidelines to manage these wastes through technologies able to minimise their environmental impact and to lead to a sustainable use of resources.
The RE-WASTE project aims to demonstrate that olive mill wastewater (OMWW) can be a valuable source of the alternative energy biogas, whilst respecting existing environmental laws and generating a profit.It plans to develop and implement a demonstration plant to run an innovative and clean technology to treat and valorise olive mill effluents. It will show that OMWW do not need to be seen as a polluting agro-industrial residue, but can be treated in an economically viable way.One of the aims of the project is the extraction of OMWW natural compounds using biological activity. It will explore potential uses of these high-added value natural extracts in, e.g. the food, pharmaceutical, cosmetic and animal feed industries. The process will also recover substantial volumes of water which can be reused in the productive process.RE-WASTE will disseminate its technical, environmental and economic results among olive oil industry operators and public bodies in Italy and the rest of Europe to ensure that industry operators have the awareness and know-how to apply the developed technology.Finally, it will evaluate the possibility of using the developed technology to treat other agro-industrial wastes in order to eliminate their polluting load and recover from them high-added-value biomolecules.

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This innovation is the result of the project

Title: Recovery, Recycling, Resource. Valorisation Of Olive Mill Effluents By Recovering High Added Value Bio-Products.


01.01.2009 to 30.06.2012

completed project

Organisations and people involved in this eco-innovation.

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Role in project: Project Coordination

Contact person: Mr. CATURANO Antonio