Fruit Waste to Ethanol and Biogas

Fruit peel is a waste, produced by Brämhults Juice AB in Sjuhärad among others. The company produces more than 160 tons per week. Due to the high water content of the fruit peel, about 80 percent, the waste is not suitable for incineration. Fruit shells also contain an antimicrobial agent , limonene, which inhibits the shells to be digested without any pretreatment. The microorganisms in the digester die.

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The aim of this work is to study how pre-treatment of the waste can transform it into ethanol, biogas or a superabsorbent material. This means that an environmental problem is converted into a useful product.


The objective of the pretreatment of orange peel waste is to reduce the antimicrobial effects of limonene and find a suitable after-treatment process, for example anaerobic digestion to produce biogas, ethanol fermentation or production of sponge material. The sponge material can then be used as a superabsorbent.
The waste will be pretreated in a weak acid process and enzymes. An evaluation of the different processes will then be made and waste producers such as Brämhults Juice AB and potential beneficiaries such as Borås Energy & Environment Ltd will be informed of the results.
The project will solve an environmental problem within Sjuhärad and strengthen the skills of several enterprizes in the district. More environmental friendly fuels such as biogas or ethanol in Sjuhärad may result from this project .


Mohammad Taherzadeh