Offsetting operating expenditure and environmental impact within food manufacturing

As one of the largest food and beverage manufacturers in the UK, our customer was motivated to reduce their environmental impact and modernise a production cycle that was incurring significant efficiency and financial shortfalls. Hydro-X Engineering (HXE) were engaged to deploy bespoke solutions that minimised waste while increasing yield. Ultimately, delivering modern tools that protected the plant from future issues associated with periods of peak output.

  • HXE customer is one of the largest food and beverage manufacturers in UK.
  • Their existing diesel-powered steam boiler had a low yield efficiency of 53%.
  • HXE installed a Reverse Osmosis (RO) unit to reduce energy and water waste.
  • HXE delivered a range of pre-emptive tools to ensure high efficiency even at peak usage.
  • Allowing customer to move towards their target of being Carbon net-zero by 2050.

Context

Our Customer specialises in manufacturing cooking sauces and carbohydrate ingredients. To aid this food production, a large volume of steam is required daily. The customer had been utilising a temporary diesel-powered steam boiler at a low yield efficiency of 53%. While this boiler did meet the steam requirements for the site, it did incur a substantial financial cost and significant negative environmental implications.

To offset this operating expenditure and environmental impact, two high-efficiency boilers with economizers were installed. While these new boilers are more efficient, without water treatment intervention, they would still be wasting a significant amount of water and energy through blowdowns. HXE therefore explored solutions that would further increase the energy and water efficiency of the boilers,  bringing the customer closer to their sustainability commitment to be Carbon net-zero by 2050.

Solution

HXE delivered a proposal for a Reverse Osmosis (RO) unit to be installed to deliver highly purified water to the steam boilers. This method virtually eliminates the Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) in the make-up water. As a result, the cycles of concentration significantly increase in a boiler – key in reducing water and energy loss. Higher cycles of concentration mean a lower frequency of blowdowns are required. Mitigating water and energy usage.

Furthermore a number of additional pre-emptive measures and systems were installed including:  a state of the art RO system including digital controls with full integration to the site’s factory management system. A blend valve to allow for treated water delivery even during peak production periods. As well as an automated hardness early warning alarm to protect the valuable RO membranes from scaling. These systems ensure that the boiler operates at peak efficiency, while prolonging the service life of components. Reducing costs associated to waste, repair and replacement parts.

Value

The team at HXE were able to create a bespoke solution for our food production customer meaning their boilers will operate at a much higher efficiency. Sustainability and economic responsibilities lie at the heart of business today, and HXE had the opportunity to provide consultative support to our customer while aiding them to meet their ambitious criteria.

At HXE we are committed to working with our customers in this way to design solutions that not only deliver environmental benefits but are also economically viable, delivering a reduction in total cost of ownership.

If you too are looking to reduce wastage – whether water, energy or financial – with increased process efficiencies. Or perhaps you wish to unlock similar hidden future opportunities with a consultative, modern engineering company, contact our expert team at Hydro-X-Engineering today.

Discuss your project with one of the Hydro-X Engineering team today.

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