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Consortium led by AEMA develops technology to improve sustainability in the European agri-food sector

– The LIFE Multi-AD 4 AgroSMEs project has been co-financed by the European Union (LIFE17 ENV/ES/000331).
– Decisive step in the efficient use of water in a strategic sector in Europe
– The technological solution guarantees a reduction of more than a third in operating costs and a more than 50% decrease in CO2 emissions.
– The technology produces biogas, giving it the potential to be energy self-sufficient and move towards industrial decarbonisation
– The innovative solution will be presented at a conference on 15 June.


AEMA, a company dedicated to water treatment and reuse, will present next 15th June, at the Institutional Winery of La Grajera in Logroño (La Rioja – Spain), an innovative wastewater treatment and recovery system developed within the framework of the European Project LIFE Multi-AD 4 AgroSMEs.

AEMA | Bondalti, is the coordinator of the consortium that has developed this initiative co-funded by the European Commission, which aims to establish new levels of efficiency in water management as a critical factor to improve the competitiveness of SMEs in the agri-food sector in the EU. This consortium also includes Institutions&Strategies (France), Energygreen Gas and ITAINNOVA (Spain) and SIS (Romania).

Given the weight of this productive sector in the European business fabric – it is the second largest on the continent and 95% of it is made up of SMEs – the responsible and sustainable use of water resources is strategic, for which a new technological paradigm is needed to enable companies to evolve towards a circular economy model.

Currently, the most commonly used water treatment systems in SMEs in the food and beverage industry are aerobic. These processes are characterised by high energy demands and high waste production (i.e. sludge), which leads to significant operational costs associated with the treatment systems.


Reality of a technological leap


The LIFE Multi-AD project has addressed the need of agri-food SMEs by creating a highly efficient and affordable anaerobic system based on a high performance multi-stage reactor. The technology enables companies in the sector to improve their sustainability, both in economic and environmental terms.

The innovative Multi-AD solution, installed on an industrial scale at Bodegas AGE, has demonstrated its ability to reduce pollution in wastewater by more than 90%, as well as its potential to reduce the electricity consumption of the treatment processes by 186,000 kWh/year and the cost of sludge management by nearly 80%.

Simultaneously to the wastewater treatment, the Multi-AD technology produces a high quality biogas with a methane content of more than 80%. This combustible gas is used as a source of thermal energy in the wastewater treatment system itself, although it could also be used in other areas of the industrial facility, furthering the goal of decarbonisation.

All these facts make it possible to achieve a reduction in the operational costs of the water treatment system of more than 35% and a halving of the carbon footprint associated with wastewater treatment. Multi-AD is therefore an innovative solution that improves industrial sustainability in the agri-food sector


Technology showcase event

On the occasion of the positive impact that this technology can have on European companies, a conference will be held on 15 June at the Bodega Institucional de La Grajera (Logroño, La Rioja) followed by a visit to the installation located at Bodegas AGE (Fuenmayor, La Rioja).

The meeting will be a magnificent networking forum with the participation of experts related to the water sector, public administrations, as well as food and beverage companies that will discuss the benefits of the integration of Multi-AD technology in industrial treatment systems.

The conference “Innovative anaerobic solution at the service of industrial sustainability”, which is already possible to register to attend in person, can also be followed via streaming, by registering at the following link.