Tomorrow’s Alcohol Can Be Made from Surplus Milk Sugar
(Technical University of Denmark) New technology from DTU can convert milk sugar (lactose) in dairy by-products into alcohol. The newly established company behind the technology has received start-up capital from CAPNOVA.
Dairies’ production of cheese generates considerable amounts of the by-product whey. While large cheese producers are able to extract more value from the whey through further processing, many smaller dairies do not have the necessary technology and know-how to do so. As such, whey is of very low value to them and is often either sold for animal feed or discarded.
Bacteria convert lactose into alcohol
Researchers from the National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, have developed a patented technology which uses lactic acid bacteria to efficiently convert lactose in the whey into ethanol.
As a DTU spin-out company, Alcowhey will continue to be based at DTU over the next couple of years. Here the company can make use of the laboratory facilities and work in synergy with the Research Group for Microbial Biotechnology and Biorefining.
Several dairies have already shown an interest in the technology and Alcowhey is looking into ways of working with distilleries. READ MORE