On 23 March 2016 Bavaria put a new screw conveyor into operation. The screw conveyor makes it possible to return treated process water from the brewery back into the immediate environment, so that the local farmers can make use of it. The conveyor was built thanks to Rijkswaterstaat, the Province of North Brabant, the municipality of Laarbeek, the Aa and Maas Water Board and ZLTO (Southern Agriculture and Horticulture Organization), and is part of the Boer Bier Water project. Associated with this initiative is the research conducted by KWR and Bavaria, within the TKI Water Technology programme, on reverse drainage (subirrigation) at the Van Dijk family’s farm. The goal of the research is to clarify the impact of the reuse of process water on crops and groundwater.
Bavaria produces a huge amount of treated process water every year from its brewery operations. The screw conveyor raises the water to a certain level, from where, thanks to the power produced by the height differential, it is transported into the immediate environment. One the one hand the water is returned subsurface to the farmers’ land via a pipe network; a process known as ‘reverse drainage’. On the other hand, it is conveyed to the canal, so that others can make use of the extra water. The ultimate objective is to keep the water in the immediate environment.
Enough water for everyone
The conveyor screw can process 1 million cubic meters of water annually. Wilfried and Caroline van Dijk will be the first users of the reverse drainage water on their farm, receiving 50 million litres annually. Jan-Renier Swinkels, Bavaria’s Executive Director, remarks: ‘Water is a vital need for everyone. With this screw conveyor we’re taking a concrete step in combating drought and promoting good water management.’
Boer Bier Water
The development of the screw conveyor is part of the Boer Bier Water project, in which Bavaria and other partners are working on preserving the groundwater’s quantity and quality. Apart from the redistribution of water, the project’s activities address crop protection, soil health and malting barley. More information about KWR’s research and Bavaria is available on the TKI Watertechnologie website.