Eaton Filters Curb Water Consumption, Feed Sustainability

Eaton Filters Curb Water Consumption, Feed Sustainability

The state of California was having a beef with a major meat packing company regarding the amount of water it was using. Perhaps more so than in any other area of the U.S., water is the lifeblood for social and economic wellbeing in this essentially arid state. Because of that, numerous legislative initiatives have been  implemented over the years to  better conserve water covering everything from the installation of more efficient sprinklers, the planting of draught-tolerant landscaping, to the upgrading of some 10 million public and private toilets.

Flushed with the need to do its part to help curb water usage, the meat packing company sought recommendations from Eaton’s Filtration business on how to more efficiently reuse and recycle water at one of its facilities in central California. Engineers at the company and Eaton representatives eventually identified one area of the processing – known as a hide-on wash station – where water usage was especially high. Recycling the rinse water, they concluded, from the hide-on stations would significantly reduce consumption. However, recycling the rinse water required an especially robust filtration system due to the extremely harsh operating conditions at a hide-on station, where the filters had to dealwith high quantities of dirt, hair, fats and other impurities. High flow rates further complicated the formidable task.

The puzzle was soon solved with the installation of three Eaton DCF-1600 filters with twin pneumatic actuators. “We were asked to make a recommendation on the conditions we saw during a site visit,” says David Peterson regional sales manager for Eaton.

“Based on what I witnessed, no other filter was capable of handling the severe operating environment.”

Ideal for a variety of food applications, Eaton DCF-1600 filters are designed for the rigors of processing highly viscous, abrasive, sticky or otherwise hard to process substances. The filters, which operate at low differential pressure, easily accommodate a wide range of flow and retention requirements.

Additional features include:

• Elimination or reduction of disposable filter bags and cartridges for reduced operator handling, inventory costs and landfill waste.
• Reduction in product loss and more thorough containment purge in a highly concentrated waste stream.
• Reduction or elimination of operator intervention for safer operation.
• Virtually maintenance free with nearly 100 percent uptime.
• Compact design and lower capital cost to fit most installations.
• Stainless steel screens ranging from 15-micron slots to ¼-inch perforations to handle a wide range of filtration needs.
• Available with most popular cleaning discs.
The dual actuators on the DCF-1600 filters isolate the actuation mechanism from the filtrate with a bridged system resulting in a long operating life in just about any challenging condition.


“The systems have been operating perfectly from the day they were installed,” says Peterson, “and the savings from water conservation have been huge.”
Because of the conservation, the company should also be safe if future restrictions develop for incoming water, which have occurred in California in the past due to ongoing water shortages. Meanwhile, discharged waste water has been effectively minimized with the reuse of recycled water.
Visitors from sister facilities have observed the DCF-1600 filters operating in California and have been impressed enough to investigate ordering their own installations, adds Peterson.

“Water reuse and recycling in the food processing industry is a recurring challenge,” says Peterson. “Thankfully, there are many areas where water can be filtered and reused with the right filtration system, including incoming water from wells, as well as water used in wash stations, cooling towers, storage tank cleaning and more.”

Less disposal of waste water also brings about important benefits to the environment, he notes.

Due to the flood of benefits still occurring today, accolades continue to pour in from all interested parties on the new beefy filters from Eaton.

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Processing chocolate? Eaton’s filtration business has the perfect solution for you.

Did you know that Eaton’s filtration business has extensive experience with the processing of chocolate and other cocoa products.

Some specific examples include:

  • Milk, white and dark chocolate
  • Chocolate-based coatings and frostings
  • Chocolate beverages
  • Cocoa mass or liquor
  • Cocoa butter
  • Cocoa powder
  • Pectin for jams and marmalades

Water is introduced many times in the beginning processing stages to filter out shells, dirt, bugs and larvae. The water is recycled many times and then re-circulated – our filtration systems can help to make this process more efficient and more complete.

Our industrial filtration systems are used in a number of processes, a few specific examples include:

  • Harvesting
    Once removed from the trees, the cocoa pods are split open to release the beans that are embedded in a pulp. When the pods are broken the beans and pulp are sterile, but they become contaminated with a variety of microorganisms from the pods, laborers hands, insects, vessels used for transport etc.
  • Fermentation
    During fermentation complex chemical changes take place in both the pulp surrounding the seeds and within the seeds themselves, and the chocolate flavor is developed. The pulp surrounding the beans develops the color and flavor of the beans. Cleaning The beans are cleaned and can then undergo a form of thermal pre-treatment to separate the shell from the bean. One form of thermal pre-treatment uses infrared technology in which the beans undergo infrared radiation on a ‘ fluidized’ bed or vibrating conveyor. Water accumulates on the surface of the bean and bursts the shell.
  • Shell Removal
    The beans are then separated from the shells. Water is introduced many times in this stage to filter out shells, dirt, bugs and larvae. The water is recycled many times and then recirculated.
  • Grinding
    The nibs are ground to make cocoa liquor. There are two stages of the grinding process. In the first stage, the beans are ground using various methods and will produce liquid mass called cocoa liquor. There are two possible ways to continue to the second stage: either the cocoa liquor is further processed into cocoa butter and cocoa powder (usually only done with low-quality beans), or chocolate.
  • Pressing
    When the nibs are ground, the resulting liquid produced by the friction is called cocoa liquor. Giant presses squeeze cocoa butter from the liquor then refined.
  • Deodorizing
    Typically cocoa butter extraction is done through a solvent, then refined and deodorized. However, if it is extracted by any other method, a strong cocoa aroma will be present. If this odor is undesirable, the addition of a deodorizing process is necessary. This process is usually completed using superheated steam under a vacuum. The steam strips and distills volatile substances from the butter. This process takes anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 hours depending on the deodorization requirements.
  • Cooling
    The cocoa butter is cooled and filtered for any final particulate that might remain. It is then prepared for the storage drum.
  • Conching
    This two stage process (dry and liquid) involves the heating of the chocolate to a pre-determined temperature to add viscosity. It is also used to eliminate any unnecessary remaining moisture. Many times the following liquid stage necessitates the addition of cocoa butter.

We offer a wide variety of filters for Food and Beverage processes. Visit Eaton today to learn more about our Food and Beverage filtration products.