Porifera’s forward osmosis systems chosen as "most promising technologies" to reduce energy consumption across California’s food and beverage processing industry.
Porifera, the leader in commercial forward osmosis, has been selected for two grants totaling $3.8M from the California Energy Commission (CEC).
Both of the company’s technologies were selected to receive awards from the $15M CEC “Bringing Rapid Innovation Development to Green Energy” program to help California’s food processing industry achieve state energy goals through technological advancement. Porifera’s proposals were selected from a field of 32 applications across a total of seven project areas.
The company has developed a proprietary process for the osmotically driven purification of water or concentration of products through a semipermeable membrane without the use of heat or pressure. Porifera’s forward osmosis technology has several advantages for food and beverage applications because it can operate reliably when processing challenging liquids that clog or foul other types of membranes. This innovative approach reduces the energy, chemicals, and maintenance required to produce high-quality food and beverage concentrates and to improve industrial water reuse capabilities.
The grants will empower Porifera to produce pilot systems for Jackson Family Wines and Frito-Lay to demonstrate the wide-ranging benefits of forward osmosis technology for the food and beverage processing industries. “These grants will provide opportunities for commercial demonstration of the wideranging benefits of Porifera’s forward osmosis technologies to reduce energy consumption and improve water reuse for development of food products,” commented Porifera CEO, Olgica Bakajin. “We are proud to apply our technologies to advance the state’s energy goals and help California food processing and production industries remain competitive in the global marketplace.”
The company was selected for a $1.9M award for the project “Energy Savings at Wineries through Osmotic Control of Brix and Alcohol” to demonstrate the Porifera Forward Osmosis Concentrator, which can extract water from a variety of food and beverage products to make concentrates using significantly less energy than traditional technologies. Porifera and Jackson Family Wines will work in collaboration with UC Davis to study potential economic and quality impacts in a winery setting.
A $2.2M grant for the “Energy and Water Savings in Food and Beverage Wastewater Reuse” project will allow Frito-Lay to demonstrate how the Porifera Forward Osmosis Recycler will clean water for reuse from industrial wastewater streams. The technology will reduce energy, chemicals, and maintenance required for wastewater treatment. This will allow the Frito-Lay site to reduce waste disposal fees, increase water availability for production and reduce overall energy use by 30-50%. The CEC grants will enable Porifera to further demonstrate the benefits of forward osmosis technology to help the California food processors cost-effectively improve energy efficiency and achieve the state’s energy goals and requirements.
Porifera is a San Leandro, California-based company which manufactures proprietary forward osmosis membranes and provides process solutions to a variety of industries. Porifera’s innovative Forward Osmosis solutions enable industries to efficiently extract water and retain only the most valuable components of their products. This unique technology facilitates the reduction of water waste, improvements to water reuse, and more efficient processing solutions to create better products using less energy. Established in 2009, Porifera serves customers in over 23 countries. For more information, visit: www.porifera.com