In the production of edible olive oil, it is customary to crush the olives in the oil press, adding water during the oil extraction process.
Then, during the centrifuge process, the phase components of oil, olive kernels, and water with substances other than the oil components are separated. This water is called Akar in Arabic and Wastewater Mill in English. It is very toxic and, hence, must not be drained nor discharged into the field. There is even a danger of groundwater contamination. Being a very serious problem for oil mills, it is routine to disperse this wastewater, composed of strong oxidants called polyphenols, in the olive groves by means of a gentle drip.
Chickens suffer from intestinal worms. These infections can lead to slow development of edible chicken and, often, even to the death of the chicken. This damage is an economic loss for farmers. Today, chickens are given antibiotics to prevent the development of intestinal worms. Consumers strongly opposed poultry antibiotics, leading to a large decline of poultry consumption in the household product basket. Farmers began searching for non-antibiotic solutions to poultry intestinal worm infections.
In a preliminary experiment it was found that olive water, containing a certain type of polyphenols, effectively prevents intestinal disease. Existing parasites die and polyphenols prevent future development of intestinal parasites.
In light of this successful experiment, ICA approved a grant for product development, based on the introduction of these polyphenols into food and not into drinking water.
Prof. Hassan Azzi from Tel Hai College and Dr. Serge Landau from ARO are the researchers.
At another lab in the Valley of Springs, the production of a type of flour from olive wastewater for baking bread and crackers was discovered. These products do not use polyphenols, so the flour is gluten-free. Therefore, olive wastewater must be separated into polyphenols for coccidiosis prevention and protein + fiber components for flour production. This process is currently being performed in an olive-press mill.
I arranged that the researchers of intestinal diseases meet with the researchers of flour production. Both research groups decided on mutual cooperation.
It is most interesting to note that, after removing polyphenols and other flour components, the residue is water, which can be used in orchard irrigation.
In summary, the results of the two beneficial studies described above include:
- preparation of a substance against poultry intestinal diseases
- preparation of flour for baking gluten-free bread and crackers
- attainment of clean irrigation water
- prevention of soil contamination
- avoidance of sewage treatment plant damage
- and last, but not least, virgin olive oil production
Photos of wastewater mill + olive oil & two-flour production have been included.