How to treat wastewater resulting from brewing and bottling activities depends on the volume of water required, and the makeup of the wastewater. There are various organic components present in brewery waste, like sugars, soluble starch, volatile fatty acids, and ethanol. These biodegradable organic materials also consist of various solids like spent grains and waste yeasts. The brewing process generates a high-strength wastewater with a high concentration of bio-chemical oxygen demand (BOD) from the carbohydrates and protein used in brewing beer.
For this smaller brewery application in Hoosick Falls, Delaware designed an aerobic treatment approach to provide increased flexibility for the high organic loadings. Aerobic treatment has less potential to produce offensive odors than anaerobic processes. The wastewater treatment system selected for Brown’s Brewing Company is comprised of a fine screen rotary drum, aerated equalization basin (EQ), anoxic tank, pre-aeration basin, and submerged membrane bio-reactor (MBR). The MBR system was chosen due to its flexibility in treating varying organic wastes.