Paques biotechnology solutions for success

Outperforming traditional methods at Ben & Jerry's.

BIOPAQ® AFR and THIOPAQ®: An all-in-one system converting industrial wastewater into biogas.

Blending sweet success with sustainable innovation

Facts and figures


  • 40 million litres of B&J ice-cream/year


  • Max 200 m3/day
  • Max 4400 kg/day COD (avg 2900 kg/d)
  • Ice, milk, cream, fruit (organics: carbohydrates, proteins, fats)

In 1953, the bakery "De Valk" in Hellendoorn introduced a highly successful ice cream, prompting a switch from manual to mechanical production. After Unilever's acquisition in 1985, Ben & Jerry's began production there in 2002. Today, 130 employees produce Ben & Jerry's ice cream for over 20 European countries. Committed to "Making the best possible ice cream in the nicest possible way,"

Ben & Jerry's uses fair-trade ingredients and eco-friendly practices. They also decided to reduce CO2 emissions by converting waste and wastewater into biogas for boiler fuel, decreasing natural gas consumption and minimizing environmental impact.

Revolutionizing waste treatment: The all-in-one BIOPAQ®AFR solution

The 'Chunkinator' represents the best environmental and commercial option for reducing the environmental impact of the site and the cost of effluent disposal. By creating renewable energy with BIOPAQ®AFR it perfectly fits in one of the many missions of the Ben & Jerry’s brand.

Mr Gerald-Jan Tijhof, Manager waste(water) treatment & recovery

Initially, B&J was advised to separate the solids of fats and proteins from the liquid waste and treat these streams separately. However, Paques proposed an innovative solution with the all-in-one reactor, the BIOPAQ®AFR process. This advanced system not only reduces CO2 emissions and discharge costs but also offers a compact footprint. With a short hydraulic retention time of less than 3.5 days, the waste is efficiently converted into biogas. This process is both economically and ecologically superior.

The BIOPAQ®AFR system has delivered remarkable results for B&J. The efficiency of COD removal stands at 90-95%, with the COD effluent level remaining below 1000 mg/l. The system produces an average of 1750 m3 of biogas per day, with a maximum output of 2640 m3. After undergoing treatment with THIOPAQ®, the biogas quality reaches 70% CH4 and H2S < 25 ppm. In comparison to regular competitive solutions, which require separate treatment streams, the BIOPAQ®AFR process is a streamlined, more effective approach that underscores Paques' commitment to sustainability and innovation.

Revolutionizing wastewater treatment with integrated anaerobic flotation technology

Essential results of BIOPAQ®AFR for Ben & Jerry's

  • Efficiency of COD removal 90-95%
  • COD effluent BIOPAQ®AFR:
  • Biogas production: avg 1750 m3/d (max 2640)
  • Biogas quality after THIOPAQ®:
    70% CH4, H2S

The BIOPAQ®AFR (Anaerobic Flotation Reactor) system revolutionizes the conversion of fat and oil-containing wastewater into energy-rich biogas. Unlike conventional methods that necessitate pre-treatment such as pre-acidification or fat separation, the BIOPAQ®AFR integrates a flotation unit within the reactor itself. This innovative design keeps sludge within the reactor by allowing white water to attach to the biomass, causing it to float and separate from the water. The retained biomass significantly enhances efficiency.

This all-in-one reactor solution not only simplifies the process but also delivers remarkable results. With sludge retention times ranging from 50 to 100 days, the system supports slow-growing bacteria that efficiently remove organic compounds and maximize biogas production. This leads to a reduction in discharge costs by over 90%. Moreover, the BIOPAQ®AFR system requires minimal chemical input, with only occasional caustic dosing needed.

In addition to the BIOPAQ®AFR, the THIOPAQ® system further optimizes biogas production by scrubbing H2S from the biogas and converting it biologically into elemental sulfur. The low caustic consumption in the THIOPAQ® ensures the biogas meets stringent quality standards for use in boilers or combined heat and power (CHP) systems.

Compared to traditional solutions that separate solids, fats, and proteins into different streams, the integrated approach of BIOPAQ®AFR streamlines operations, increases efficiency, and reduces operational costs. This makes it an ideal solution for sustainable wastewater treatment and biogas production.


All-in-One anaerobic system transforms Ben & Jerry's wastewater into biogas

Download the Ben & Jerry's case document and discover how the innovative BIOPAQ®AFR system revolutionizes wastewater treatment by integrating flotation technology within the reactor, boosting efficiency, and reducing costs by over 90%. Learn about its minimal chemical use and the THIOPAQ® system’s optimization of biogas quality.

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At Paques, we believe in a cleaner, more sustainable world where innovation in biotechnology plays a crucial role in managing our planet's resources wisely.

If you have any questions or wish to explore what Paques technologies can do for your operations, we encourage you to connect with our team of experts. Our knowledgeable professionals are ready to assist you, offering insights and guidance tailored to your specific needs.

Leading the biotech revolution in wastewater and biogas

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The Paques Team