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Treatment of dairy industry and other food processing industry wastewaters requires acknowledgement of the unique characteristics of the raw materials, end products and manufacturing processes generating the wastewater stream. Dairy industry manufacturing plants generally handle very organic strength raw materials and products in a liquid form which, when encountered in the wastewater stream from the factories, results in highly variable wastewater character. Each manufacturing site has a unique set of site-specific wastewater management goals and site environmental characteristics. Effective design of wastewater management facilities must provide for a conservative approach addressing all of these unique factors on a site-specific basis. Process selection should reflect plant specific strategies for spill detection and diversion, wastewater equalization, secondary treatment and tertiary treatment processes and the utilization of equipment compatible with dairy industry waste streams. Successful wastewater management facility designs, particularly for biological pretreatment or treatment systems will provide for response to anticipated process upsets due to spills and wide variations in raw wastewater characteristics. Other factors addressed in successful facility design include nutrient balance in the wastewater management process and accommodation for potential precipitation of calcium and phosphorus deposits in tanks, pipelines and on equipment. Dairy wastewater strength, pH, temperature and chloride concentrations have a significant impact upon the design and operation of wastewater management facilities. Equally important to the design and process/equipment selection is the skill and knowledge of the operator(s) employed to manage the wastewater management facilities. Effective utilization of the process and equipment available is the path to establish long-term effective and stable wastewater treatment performance.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2001

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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