Pelagic Industry Processing Effluents: Innovative and Sustainable Solutions (PIPE)

The main goal for the PIPE project is to test cutting edge technologies, to separate water and organic material from pelagic industries effluents and to characterize as well as valorise the organic material collected. The main objectives of the PIPE project are to: (i) test technologies such as ceramic membranes and electrochemistry for their efficiency in separating organic matter from effluents from marinated herring production, (ii) characterize the chemical composition, antioxidant activity and functionality of different streams and fractions before and after separation and (iii) evaluate the market potential for the recovered fractions. Throughout the PIPE-project, effluent streams covering all steps in the marinated herring production i.e. from boat to the final marinated products, have been carefully characterized including different products type and over different seasons. Several pilot scale separation trials have also been carried out, and the fractions generated have been investigated for their basic composition, antioxidant activity and functional properties. Concrete results and conclusions: The herring industry is losing between 10% and 20% of the biomass in the water, an amount that is equivalent to several million Krone/year. Indeed, the effluents are heavy loaded with protein, non-protein nitrogen, fatty acids and trace elements e.g. iron and phosphor. The also present some very promising antioxidant capacity such as reducing power, radical scavenging and iron chelation, as well as enzymatic activity such as peroxidase and protease activity. Separation technologies were tested, however needs to be further optimized e.g. regarding flux or combined with other technologies in order to efficiently recapture the lost biomass for it potential commercialization to high-end products. Recommendations: We strongly recommend further characterization and purification of seafood production effluents for identification of nutrients and potentially bioactive compounds for use e.g. in food, feed or as nutraceuticals. In some cases, expensive separation technology might not be necessary if effluents are treated as food grade and are used directly in food, however this need to be evaluated further.


Ingrid Undeland (contact)

Biträdande professor at Biology and Biological Engineering, Food and Nutrition Science


Technical University of Denmark (DTU)

Lyngby, Denmark


Nordic Innovation

Funding years 2012–2015

Related Areas of Advance and Infrastructure

Life Science Engineering

Area of Advance

Sustainable Development

Chalmers Driving Force

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