Waste Water Management System at Cave Spring Cellars
Author: Cave Spring Cellars
Published: October 29, 2015
Jordan, ON Thursday, October 29, 2015 – Cave Spring Cellars has been recognized as a leader in sustainable practices with the launch of its new BioGill wastewater management system. This system is not only the first of its kind in the North American wine sector, but also unique to any food and beverage processor on the continent.
As a member of the Wine Council of Ontario’s sustainability committee addressing the topic of wastewater management, Cave Spring’s Operations Manager Dave Hooper was introduced to the Bloom Centre in Mississauga, ON. Bloom Centre is a non-profit organization engaged in connecting sustainable technologies such as BioGill with industry stakeholders. The Bloom Centre linked Cave Spring Cellars and EcoEthic, the supplier of the BioGill. After running a pilot for 18 months with EcoEthic, the results lead to Cave Spring to the conclusion that the installation of the BioGill would significantly reduce the winery’s environmental footprint.
The BioGill wastewater treatment system reduces the amount of organic matter in process wastewater before it is reintroduced into the municipal water system. Similar to an ecosystem, naturally occurring moulds, fungi and bacteria form on membranes – the ‘gills’ in the system – consuming the organic matter found in the wastewater. This organic matter or carbon contained in the alcohol, sugar and acids of the wastewater contribute to an elevated biological oxygen demand (BOD). Wastewater with high BOD levels cannot be safely or legally reintroduced into the environment. The BioGill effectively reduces BOD count of the winery’s wastewater so that the regional water authority can manageably treat the effluent before returning it to Lake Ontario.
Regulations in Ontario state that wineries with a BOD greater than 350 mg per litre face a disposal surcharge. By using the BioGill technology Cave Spring Cellars is able to return their wastewater to the municipal treatment system at BOD levels significantly below regulated levels. The BioGill treated water puts less of a burden on local municipal infrastructure, resulting in savings for both Cave Spring Cellars and the local community.
The BioGill treatment system is not only another step towards minimizing the winery’s impact on the environment, but also a pioneering initiative in the development of sustainable practices within the food and beverage industry in Canada. By adopting innovative technology such as BioGill, Cave Spring Cellars continues to lead the way in environmental sustainability in the Canadian wine industry while creating wines that exceed the expectations of the marketplace.