General Characteristics and Treatment Possibilities of 
Dairy Wastewater – A Review

Aleksandar Kolev Slavov

University of Food Technologies, Faculty of Economics, Department of Environmental Engineering, 26 Maritsa Blvd, BG-4002 Plovdiv, Bulgaria


Article history:
Received  November 11, 2015
Accepted  October 19, 2016

Key words:
dairy wastewater, wastewater composition, whey, biological treatment


The milk processing industry is one of the world’s staple industries, thus the treatment possibilities of dairy effluents have been attracting more and more attention. The purpose of the paper is to review contemporary research on dairy wastewater. The origin, categories, as well as liquid by-products and general indicators of real dairy wastewater are described. Different procedures applied for dairy wastewater management are summarised. Attention is focused on in-factory treatment technologies with the emphasis on biological processes. Aerobic and anaerobic methods with both their advantages and disadvantages are discussed in detail. Consecutive anaerobic and aerobic systems are analysed, too. Finally, future research niches are identified.


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