Uruguay: New 77.000 t malting plant recovers thermal energy from biomass

A new malting plant of Malteria Oriental SA (MOSA) in Montevideo, Uruguay is going to use a revolutionary Belgium technology that will save 35,000 tons of CO2 emissions each year. The malting company is currently enlarging its malting capacity by 77.000 tons to about 220,000 tons of malt per year.

The new malting plant will recover thermal energy from biomass, a by-product of malt production. A 20-megawatt superheated water boiler with dual combustion systems will burn internal barley husks and plant rejects, completed by externally sourced wood chips.

“This will save 35,000 tons of CO2 emissions each year compared to standard operational practices in Uruguay,” says Bühler Group. Bühler, a Swiss multinational plant equipment manufacturer announced on Thursday a strategic partnership with Belgian technology supplier Vyncke to offer integrated solutions that reduce carbon emissions in food plants.

“This partnership is a key element in our strategy to massively reduce CO2 in the value chains of our customers,” said Johannes Wick, CEO of Bühler Grains & Food. The expansion of the malt production in Montevideo is the first project of the new partnership which will initially focus on the segments of cocoa, oat and malt processing.

Construction of the new tower malting with a batch size of 260 tons of barley started in 2019 and commissioning is scheduled for March 2022. MOSA which is indirectly owned by Grupo Petrópolis, Brazil’s largest privately owned brewing group with a domestic market share of about 12 percent, is already running two malting plants at this site.

The first malting plant with saladin boxes has a capacity of 200 tons per batch, and the second one in malting tower format was commissioned in 2016 with a capacity of 280 tons per batch. Both together have a combined yearly production of 140,000 ton of malt.

The additional production is mainly destined to satisfy the growing malt needs of Grupo Petrópolis. The brewer opened in August a new brewery with three production lines in Uberaba,a municipality in the west of the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil. (inside.beer, 26.3.2019) A fourth production line started recently production, bringing up the yearly production capacity in the plant to 8.5 million hl of beer. A fifth production line is scheduled to be operational in August, adding another 1.9 million hl yearly production capacity.

Besides sales to the parent company Petrópolis, MOSA has also developed business relations with Argentinian clients and malt suppliers.Founded in 1934, MOSA was not only the Uruguay’s first malting company, but is also the largest today.

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