New technology increases efficiency of residual heat for farmers

Ten Have-Mellema, Like Fresh and TOP bv have developed two new technologies that use residual heat. An innovative drying technology and a continuous hygienisator, that hygienises fermented manure and plant residues.

The residual heat that is released from a biodigester on a farm is often used for heating stables and houses, but there is still a lot of residual heat left. Since 2011 Dutch pig farmer Ten Have-Mellema and technology companies LikeFresh and TOP bv have worked on two innovations that deploy residual heat more efficiently.

Using residual heat for drying
The first innovation refers to mild drying of food products such as meat and vegetables on a new type of contact dryer, which is fed with residual heat. Because the heat source is in direct contact with the food product, it can be dried quickly on low temperature. This way the nutrients and taste are best preserved. The companies already developed a very tasty dried pork product with the meat from the Ten Have-Mellema farm.

Tackling manure surplus in The Netherlands
The second innovation is a revolutionary technique that hygienises digestate, fermented manure and crop residuals, from the biodigester in a continuous process. By hygienisation, harmful bacteria are eliminated, making the digestate safe. This process is also completely heated by residual heat, replacing the old static batch principle of a heated silo. Because hygienised digestate is clean, it may be exported within the EU as fertilizer. This is an opportunity for the manure surplus in The Netherlands, and also in other areas where there is a shortage of fertilizer.

Innovation in real life
Working with these innovations in real life using residual heat show that the technologies are very suitable for agricultural companies. And it’s not just for economical benefits. These developments also contribute to the vision of Ten Have-Mellema on an integrated farm, where the cycle of production, consumption and recycling of residual products is closed.