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Re: Filter Mud



Jeff,

I have completed cleaner production/environmental work for several sugar mills in 
Sothern Florida.  My experience is the similar in that the filter mud is either wasted (left 
in ponds) or used as a soil conditioner.  

I know that you are looking for higher value alternatives for this material.  But, one thing 
to consider.  Harvesting sugar cane generally depletes the soil (they are losing topsoil 
at a fraction of an inch per year).  Without returning soil mass, the harvesting is 
unsustainable in terms of loss of topsoil.

Therefore, returning the filter mud as a soil conditioner has a higher value than 
attributed if it is merely compared against the corresponding cost of chemical fertilizers.
  
As far as other alternatives, limestone (calcium carbonate) is a very prevalent 
compound.  As it is relatively inexpensive in a pure form, recovering the compound from 
the mud would be more expensive than harvesting fresh limestone.  Therefore, higher 
value options for the filter mud need to see the soil particles incorporated into the 
calcium carbonate during juice clarification as an asset.  Soil conditioning does so,  I 
can't think of others offhand. Perhaps soil conditioning for high pH soils would fetch 
higher value (the calcium carbonate serves as a natural buffering agent). 

Regards

Bruce
 
Bruce Taylor, P.Eng.
President
Enviro-Stewards Inc
1 Union Street
Elmira, Ontario
N3B 3J9

Phone: (519) 578-5100
Fax:     (519) 669-5002

www.enviro-stewards.com

On 17 Jan 2005 at 9:54, Jeff Seadon wrote:

Date sent:      	Mon, 17 Jan 2005 09:54:48 +1300
From:           	"Jeff Seadon" <jseadon@unitec.ac.nz>
To:             	<p2tech@great-lakes.net>
Subject:        	Filter Mud
Send reply to:  	"Jeff Seadon" <jseadon@unitec.ac.nz>

> Good morning!
> I am involved with a local sugar manufacturer is seeking alternative
> means of disposing of the filter mud (primarily calcium carbonate) that
> is a by-product of the refining process. Elsewhere, the filter mud is
> commonly used as a soil conditioner. Does anyone know of any other
> innovative, and potentially higher-value, uses that have been found for
> this material?
> 
> Any help would be appreciated.
> 
> 
> 
> Jeff
> 
> Jeff Seadon
> Senior Lecturer
> School of the Built Environment
> Unitec New Zealand
> Private Bag 92025
> Auckland 
> New Zealand
> phone 649 815 4321 ext 8465
> fax 649 815 6795
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