Saputo: Management of the saline waste from dairy processing (2021-22)

Management of the saline waste from dairy processing (2021-22)

This project is proudly funded and supported by Gardiner Dairy Foundation

Description of the project:

Saline wastewater is one of the by-products of the cheese and whey product production and a product that is difficult to handle. In the past this product was stored in evaporation ponds, however this is no longer a viable option due to the possible impact on the environment and surrounding areas and as such sustainable alternatives to process this waste stream are required. As well as processing current waste streams we also need a solution for the treatment of historical waste streams in evaporation ponds.

The student team will be required to develop a detailed understanding of the site’s producers of saline waste streams and identify technological opportunities to reduce these streams and treat these streams to produce products that can dispose of sustainably. There is also a requirement to identify potential disposal opportunities for historical saline waste as well as improved storage opportunities for this waste, which is currently stored in several evaporation ponds. The ponds are lined with a geomembrane liner, which have a limited life.

Saputo Dairy Australia is a division of Saputo Inc, one of the top ten dairy processors in the world. With operations across nine manufacturing facilities, SDA is the largest milk processor in Australia. Producing high quality dairy products for over 130 years, the Allansford site is also the oldest dairy processing site in Australia and one of the largest employers in south-west Victoria; employing over 800 people. The site produces a variety of cheeses, butter and butter blends, dairy powders, milk and cream for markets in Australia and internationally.