Dewatering Fresh Cut Waste

October 25, 2014

Fresh cut facilities operate on a very large scale in the United States. These are facilities where produce is processed into a form that is ready for the market. The bagged salads found in supermarkets come from these plants. The example we give to illustrate is this: you do not see kids in the back of McDonald's cutting up produce for the Big Macs. That lettuce and tomato comes from fresh cut facilities.

Dewatering produce waste from fresh cut operations is a significant market for Vincent equipment. Sometimes we even have a booth at the fresh cut show. Although we list over fifty in the users' list on our web site, most of the customers do not have nationally recognized names. However, Fresh Express, Taylor Farms, and Dole Fresh Vegetable may ring a bell.

Typically the waste generated is over ten tons per hour. The screw press separates about one half of the waste into the flow of wastewater effluent. Although the dissolved solids are generally low, this can present a problem for some wastewater treatment systems.

The photos below show two installations.

One photo shows a simple indoor arrangement. There is a floor-level hopper into which waste is periodically dumped. This material is conveyed up, where it drops into a Model KP-10 screw press. Small installations such as this generally are not cost effective.

Another photo shows an outdoor installation. Note that a shredder, Vincent Model VS-18, is mounted on the inlet to the Model KP-16 screw press. The inclusion of a shredder assures that a maximum amount of the waste will be expelled as liquid.

Another item to note in this photo is the Reyco separation cyclone. This is seen at the top left-hand corner. The Reyco vacuum system is used to collect waste within the packaging plant.



Issue #267