A new approach for concurrently improving performance of South Korean food waste valorization and renewable energy recovery via dry anaerobic digestion under mesophilic and thermophilic conditions

Waste Manag. 2017 Aug:66:161-168. doi: 10.1016/j.wasman.2017.03.049. Epub 2017 Apr 9.


Dry semicontinuous anaerobic digestion (AD) of South Korean food waste (FW) under four solid loading rates (SLRs) (2.30-9.21kg total solids (TS)/m3day) and at a fixed TS content was compared between two digesters, one each under mesophilic and thermophilic conditions. Biogas production and organic matter reduction in both digesters followed similar trends, increasing with rising SLR. Inhibitor (intermediate products of the anaerobic fermentation process) effects on the digesters' performance were not observed under the studied conditions. In all cases tested, the digesters' best performance was achieved at the SLR of 9.21kg TS/m3day, with 74.02% and 80.98% reduction of volatile solids (VS), 0.87 and 0.90m3 biogas/kg VSremoved, and 0.65 (65% CH4) and 0.73 (60.02% CH4) m3 biogas/kg VSfed, under mesophilic and thermophilic conditions, respectively. Thermophilic dry AD is recommended for FW treatment in South Korea because it is more efficient and has higher energy recovery potential when compared to mesophilic dry AD.

Keywords: Dry anaerobic digestion; Food waste; Mesophilic condition; Renewable energy recovery; Solids loading rate; Thermophilic condition.

MeSH terms

  • Anaerobiosis
  • Biofuels
  • Bioreactors
  • Food*
  • Refuse Disposal*
  • Republic of Korea


  • Biofuels