The Big Three Trends Causing Your Customers Pain

  • MDG

My name is Ardean Veldkamp, business development manager at Microbial Discovery Group (MDG). I joined MDG in 2013 and have been working in the biotech industry for over 25 years.

In late 2015, MDG launched the Biotifx™ Platform to the wastewater market. The Biotifx™ Platform is a product and program approach that not only includes access to proven products, but also MDG’s research, education, and ongoing technical support. Since the Biotifx™ Platform launch, we have visited hundreds of wastewater treatment plants (WWTP’s) with our distribution partners. On and off-site we have helped our partners identify and assess PAINS of the facility and implement solutions.

Across hundreds of WWTP’s, three PAINS have shown up consistently: Sludge, Odor and F.O.G. (Fats, Oils and Grease), also known as “The Big Three”. The Big Three all are associated with big costs, both financially and operationally. Before diving into the effects of each of these pains, I’d like to lay out a quick definition. Let’s see how Wikipedia defines the three.

– Sludge: A semi-solid slurry and can be produced as sewage sludge from wastewater treatment processes or as a settled suspension obtained from conventional drinking water treatment and numerous other industrial processes.

– Odor: An odor or fragrance is caused by one or more volatilized chemical compounds, generally at a very low concentration, that humans or other animals perceive by the sense of olfaction.

– Fat: Also known as triglycerides, are esters of three fatty acid chains and the alcohol glycerol. The terms “oil”, “fat”, and “lipid” are often confused. “Oil” normally refers to a fat with short or unsaturated fatty acid chains that is liquid at room temperature, while “fat” may specifically refer to fats that are solids at room temperature.

– Oil: Is any neutral, nonpolar chemical substance that is a viscous liquid at ambient temperatures and is both hydrophobic (immiscible with water, literally “water fearing”) and lipophilic (miscible with other oils, literally “fat loving”).

– Grease: Is a semisolid lubricant. Grease generally consists of a soap emulsified with mineral or vegetable oil.

The question I ask you today is, are the PAINS the real problem or a symptom of an underlying problem? When trying to address the PAIN, are you treating the source or trying to mask the outcome?

Here’s a quick example, if I look at being overweight as a PAIN, the truth is the weight is really a symptom of lack of exercise or the enjoyment of too much food. If I were to try and address being overweight by simply wearing larger clothes, my weight would never change.

This idea of addressing the source is a key component when dealing with Sludge, Odor, and F.O.G. Treating the symptoms by hauling sludge or masking an odor isn’t solving the real issue, which is commonly a problem with your biology.