Water is always a major talking point in Adelaide, capital city of the driest state on the driest continent. Pro-active local industries often lead the way in adopting measures to conserve sometimes scarce drinking water supplies. Adelaideâ€™s iconic Coopers Brewery is no exception to this cause and when planning its move to a substantially larger site actively sought out water saving measures including the replacement of mains water with ground water. Aware that the ground water source was slightly saline and would require treatment prior to use, Coopersâ€™ management turned to Osmoflo which had already provided a small 200 kL/d reverse osmosis plant at the original Leabrook plant.
Osmofloâ€™s solution was to design a plant which met initial needs at the new brewery following its commissioning in 2001, but which could be easily upsized in line with future expansion. This occurred in 2007 when Osmoflo increased the capacity of its plant by 50% to 3ML/d Following pre-treatment to remove suspended solids the reverse osmosis plant reduces the salinity of the ground water from around 6,000mg/L TDS to 60mg/L. The concentrate or reject water from the desalination process is held in tanks and mixed with rainwater, making it suitable for the irrigation of a three hole golf course at the Regency Park site.
Coopers are achieving net savings by using ground water instead of mains water while the use of reject water in irrigation is also reducing effluent discharge costs. Osmoflo also offered its client a Build Own Operate arrangement whereby Osmoflo owns and operates the RO plant and the brewery is billed on consumption. Under this scheme, Osmoflo has the responsibility of providing water to the required standard, while Coopers can concentrate on what it does best â€“ brewing beers of high quality.
Coopers Brewery Limited is the largest Australian-owned brewery, based in South Australia, brewing beer for over 150 years.