Separating components in food waste streams


Food waste streams containing multiple ingredients are hard to reuse on a production line and wasting food is both ethically and financially wrong. Mondelēz asked Innovia to find manufacturing processes to separate out the components of a composite food waste stream that would otherwise go to waste.


Using a combination of experimentation and theoretical analysis, we identified a critical temperature window in which the properties and interactions of each component differed and explored how to exploit these to separate the components. We created a simple costing tool that enabled us to estimate the value of each separation option, allowing us to prioritise them. Finally, we made sample products using the separated components and demonstrated proof-of-concept for the lead option.


The lead option for recovering the food product represented an opportunity of up to a million dollars a year. This option was mechanically simple and could be applied to a range of products within Mondelēz’s portfolio. Mondelēz is actively exploring this novel process.