California pepper processor cuts BOD by 50% and TSS by 70%

Find out how with an expert consultation.


A southern California pepper processor was looking for a better solution than their existing drum and shaker screen for primary clarification and screening of pepper solids in their process flows.

Excessive Total Suspended Solids (TSS) loading was straining the capacity of their worm digester, and solids greater than 200 micron in diameter would overwhelm the digester.

Reducing the load sent to the digesters would ease their operations and help ensure that the plant could remain operating at full capacity at all times.


The plant owners identified the Hydro-Industrial MicroScreen™ as a potential alternative screening technology, and scheduled a trial.

A Hydro-Industrial MicroScreen™ unit was tested at four locations to determine where its solids reduction abilities would prove most beneficial to the plant.

Each source had unique characteristics and flow volumes.

Feeds were sent to the system from after the drum screen, after the shaker screen, after the blanch water and a combined flow coming from all of the above processes.


The Hydro-Industrial MicroScreen™ captured between 14 and 42 cubic feet (0.4 and 1.2 m³) of dewatered solids per hour across the various testing points, from flows of between 23 and 31 gpm (1.5 and 2.0 l/s):

  • After the Drum Screen: 24 cu ft per hour (0.7 m³/hr)
  • After the Shaker Screen: 14 cu ft per hour (0.4 m³/hr)
  • After the Blanch Water: 42 cu ft per hour (1.2 m³/hr)
  • Combined Materials from All Processes: 14 cu ft per hour (0.4 m³/hr)

The raw water influent from the combined influent was tested for BOD and TSS removal and was found to provide 50% particulate BOD reduction and 70% TSS reduction under heavy solids loading conditions.