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At all our production facilities water is used to clean machines and utensils after each use, and in turn a lot of water is used daily on cleaning exclusively. To keep the water from going down the drain and serving any further purpose, we aim to minimise water consumption in general, to reduce the organic matter in wastewater, and to recycle as much water as possible. For example, the agreement with our Danish cleaning company includes a commitment to look at ways of reducing water consumption. Below you can explore more of the things we have initiated and how far along we are. 

Reduced water use through better processes and equipment

New equipment and process optimisation goes hand in hand in our efforts to reduce water consumption. For example, new processes and machinery have led to large reductions in water consumption when dehairing pigs at our production facilities in Blans, Denmark and Essen, Germany. Similar upgrades are expected in other relevant facilities. Another example is, increased automation in the cleaning process at our production facility in Dalsjöfors, Sweden, which is expected to reduce the use of water and chemicals and hours spend on cleaning.

Pilot project: Recycling process water

We have teamed up with other food companies, authorities, technology providers, universities and research institutes to develop and test technologies that can help food companies produce more with less water. These collaborations takes place within the public-private partnership known as the Danish partnership for Resource and water-efficient Industrial food Production (DRIP). Our focus is on the possibilities of re-circulating and reusing treated process water for new purposes, known as "Water fit for purpose", without compromising food quality and food safety.

As a result of this partnership, we have installed the first pilot water-recycling facility at our Danish pig abattoir in Horsens. Extensive testing has documented that filtration techniques, ozone flotation and UV technology can purify process water to drinking water quality. This means the water can be used in other parts of the production process. Our estimate is that, when fully functioning, the water-recycling can reduce the abattoir’s total water consumption by up to 10 per cent.

Reducing water consumption and organic matter in wastewater from production and cleaning processes also reduces energy consumption to heat water and treat wastewater.
Pinpointing new water saving potentials
By proceeding methodologically, we can map out where we can reduce the water consumption and achieve the highest impact. That is why we are continuously working to improve our data collection and validation processes. For example, with regard to monitoring water consumption, we are looking into continuous digital registration of water consumption in various production processes at each facility. This will pinpoint water-intensive processes and reduction potentials.