Developing a food waste biorefinery: Lactic acid extraction using anionic resin and impacts on downstream biogas production

Christopher H. Bühlmann, Bede S. Mickan, Stephan Tait, Parisa A. Bahri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Coupling lactic acid (LA) production with food waste (FW) anaerobic digestion (AD) can facilitate the next generation biorefinery to increase revenue and economic viability of FW AD. For this, LA should be effectively extracted from complex fermentation broths with minimal adverse effects on subsequent AD to maximise economic benefit. This study evaluated LA recovery by adsorption using a polymeric resin (BA765), not previously tested for LA, to explore adsorption capacity and kinetics. Furthermore, biochemical methane potential (BMP) tests were utilised to assess the effect of LA extraction on subsequent AD by measuring biogas production from the solid and liquid extraction residues. Optimal adsorption conditions yielded a maximum capacity of 0.21 gLA·g−1resin from pure solutions at pH 2–4, which was insensitive to temperature. However, real mixed fermentation broth impurities reduced LA uptake by 37%. BMP tests showed that the solid and liquid extraction residues had significant methane potential, with only a 21% reduction in overall methane yield compared to the raw fermentation broth prior to LA extraction. LA production outweighed the loss in methane energy in terms of relative value and indicated a FW biorefinery concept could be commercially attractive and technically feasible.

Original languageEnglish
Article number133243
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Volume431
Early online date30 Oct 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2022

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