Pure alcohol from whey
Alcowhey ApS was founded in 2017 as a spinout from the National Food Institute at The Technical University of Denmark, DTU. DTU is an international elite technical university where education, scientific advice, and innovation rest on a solid foundation of world-class research.
Alcowhey’s ambition is to turn the vast amounts of whey residuals into valuable alcohol.
This enables dairies to solve an environmental problem and it enables alcohol producers to obtain alcohol from a sustainable source – not food crops.
Whey as a waste problem
Globally, more than 100 million tonnes of whey are disposed of every year. The disposal of whey is a worldwide problem.
Large quantities of whey are produced as a by-product during the manufacture of cheese, Greek yoghurt, Skyr and other dairy products.
For example, when producing 1 kg of cheese, 10 kgs of milk is used. The remaining 9 kgs are whey.
Whey is associated with environmental problems due to its low pH and high organic content and must be disposed of or processed in an environmentally acceptable way.
Alcowhey is offering a new way of solving an environmental problem and at the same time creating a valuable product.
Saving the food crops
Today, most alcohol is produced from food crops, typically maize, sugar cane or wheat. These are crops that could be utilized as food.
It takes approximately 1.000 kgs of crops to produce 400 litres of alcohol. Globally, the production of ethanol is estimated at around 80 billion litres.
Currently nearly one billion people live in hunger, despite an increasing supply of food production. However, the increased supply is not destined for consumption by humans nor secondary consumption through animal feedstock, but for bioethanol production.
In Alcowhey, we aim at producing alcohol locally from sustainable resources, using disposable whey residuals.
Meet our team
The team behind AlcoWhey consist of the two founders, Professor Peter Ruhdal Jensen and Associate Professor Christian Solem.
They have extensive experience from working with LAB, dairy and biofuels, metabolic engineering and fermentation, patents, innovation, licenses and start-ups.
Furthermore, the team consists of two experienced scientists specialized in fermentation and microbiology, and an experienced sales director.