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MINIMEAU project : minimization of water consumption in agro-food industries by developing a combined approach integrating pinch and water footprint methods

Needing significant water amounts for a variety of uses, food industry strongly relies on water availability. In a context of strong pressure on water uses and possible punctual water shortage, food industry currently faces challenges regarding water supply. Most food industry sectors are already engaged in water sparing by implementing good practices or common sense actions. A novel step has now to be taken. Comprehensive and systematic re-design of water networks is to be achieved, including water recycling or reuse.

The ambition of MINIMEAU project is to elaborate and provide integrated eco-design tools and technological water treatment solutions that will help factories to reduce water consumption and effluent discharge, and optimize water use and management, through scenario propositions. It will rely on the development of the water Pinch methodology and its adaptation to multi-contaminant problems. Water Pinch will be strongly associated with the finest environmental impact assessment methods (Water Footprint and LCA) to ensure that revamping propositions do not generate detrimental effects. This combined approach will be implemented in a software solution, together with adequate water treatment modules, providing operational decision-making tools for the economic actors and authorities in charge of the regulation on food safety.

This four-year project (2018-2021) associates academic partners (AgroParisTech/GENIAL unit, Irstea/ITAP unit), industry (ProSim), several institutes (CTCPA, ITERG, ACTALIA, UNGDA, IFV) representing food sectors mostly concerned by water issues and a transfer center (CRITT Paca).

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