Fish Farm Gets Water from the Waste of a Sustainable Brewery


Sustainable recycling practices represent not only a trend but also a necessity nowadays. Many companies today are rethinking how to dispose of their waste in the most positive, sustainable manner. Different organizations collaborate in this sense and come up with solutions that are helping make waste easier to dispose of in an effort to lower costs and create a more sustainable business practice.

Collaboration between a New York-based brewery, Five & 20 Craft Spirits and Brewing and a startup fish farm, TimberFish Technologies began to help develop a more sustainable way of disposing of brewery waste. The idea is that the fish farm gets the food and water for the fish from the brewery, in the form of used grains and wastewater. It all started when TimberFish built a tank system for the fish and other aquatic creatures to have a suitable habitat. Then, Five and 20 brewery had to build a system that would help them filter the brewing water properly. It is important to note that the grains from the brewing do not go directly in, but first, they get finely chopped and mixed with sustainably harvested wooden chips. 

The wooden chips being mixed in will release Phosphorus and Nitrogen in the water. These chemical elements help create a favorable environment for the microbes to feed properly. The microbes will eventually settle at the bottom and clean the water. As the microbes grow, they become food for the snails and worms in the water. As a result, the fish have food from a completely sustainable and clean process. The fish will also produce the excrements which will go back to the bottom of the tank, and the microbes can re-start producing food for the nails and worms. Everything works just like a chain-solution, a most ecologically friendly one.  This system offers the fish a beneficial ecosystem where they can thrive. 

The fish farm provides an innovative solution for the brewery to recycle their water, but that’s not all. The fish farm steps up on a financial level too in the befit of the brewery. In the past, the brewery had to pay separately for a service to clean up their water and take away the grain residue. Another company would take the grain waste away and then re-use it for compost. 
However, the brewery paid out almost $30,000 for these services alone. Today, this successful collaboration eliminates any costs, yet these two companies have created a truly sustainable and clean recycling concept. In fact, the companies have high hopes they will be able to build even more farms based on this sustainable procedure. The first harvest will take place next spring/summer, and the fish will go to local restaurants and markets. 

Interested in learning more about innovative alternatives to traditional wastewater treatment technologies? Contact us today.