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Going Green in the Distilling Industry

October 8, 2015

Russell Finex equipment to help distillers reduce carbon footprint

In a world where people are becoming more aware of the impact of pollution and diminishing natural resources, going green has become a major focus for businesses across the globe. In 2013, Russell Finex made a conscious effort to reduce its carbon footprint with the decision to install a new wood pellet boiler at their UK factory.

Now in 2015, the global leader in sieving and filtration is taking its green efforts to the distilling industry. More and more distillers are utilizing Russell Finex’s liquid solid separation equipment as an alternative solution to dewatering distillers spent grain when distilling alcohol such as gin, vodka and whiskey. Not only does this innovative equipment help distillers save time and money, it also helps to reduce their carbon footprint.

Processing distillers mash

There are two main methods for producing alcohol in the distilling industry. One method, called fractional distilling, adds the mash slurry into the still, while the second method uses the mash liquid during the distillation process. In both methods the mash needs to be processed either before or after the still to remove as much liquid as possible.

Until now, this extraction process has been time consuming, labor intensive and costly and is either carried out manually using mechanical grate presses or high-tech evaporators. The Russell Liquid Solid Separator™ is now being used in the distilling industry to dewater spent distillate in a fast and effective way.

Separating grains from liquids

Typically during the spirits production process at most American distilleries, grains are left in the liquid as it is sent through the fermentation process. Installing this unique liquid solid separation technology gives distillers’ the opportunity to optimize production by fitting more liquid in the fermenter resulting in more alcohol with each fermentation. Additionally, liquid waste is reduced, making solid waste material lighter reducing disposal costs. The discharged grain is then able to be sent to local farmers to be used as animal feed or compost.

One of the biggest impacts the Russell Liquid Solid Separator™ makes on the distilling process is its ability to cut on production time. The machines ability to handle high flow rates up to 100 US gal/min (400 l/mins), ensures that distillers can achieve faster batch times resulting in an increase in daily production. The machine offers the convenience of little to no labor as well as very simple set up and operation. With the Russell Liquid Solid Separator™, distillers can get the same job done in more than half the time, resulting in higher yield and more energy efficient operation. With its small footprint and simple design, mash or spent mash is processed through this separator within minutes removing 70% to 80% of the mash liquid from the solids.

Reclaiming, recovering and reusing spent grains

This centrifugal separator also enables materials to be reused. During the dewatering process, some solids can be reintroduced into the distillation cycle. The reuse of grain cuts down on the use of natural resources and saves the distillers’ time as well.


With the number of success stories continuing to rise from those already adopting this separation solution, distilleries from across the world are turning to Russell Finex to help them improve their separation process. Benefits such as carbon footprint reduction, increased efficiency and productivity, and quick installation, allow distillers to incorporate the machine into their production process with ease and satisfaction. Combining this with simple operation and low running costs, this system ensures distillers receive a rapid ROI while also helping to provide an environmentally sound and ecologically responsible production process.

The more conscious the world becomes about the importance of reducing our carbon footprints, the more solutions such as this one are going to play a vital role in the success of business. Russell Finex’s innovative liquid solid separation equipment has the potential to change the distilling industry’s traditional distilling process as we know it.

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