Reuse of waste and rainwater

Colruyt Group is fully committed to circular water management, both in the stores and at production sites, distribution centres and offices. By collecting rainwater and waste water as much as possible and - if necessary - treating it, we return it to the cycle and can reuse it. 

This initiative contributes to our objectives regarding

Published on 08/03/2022

By 2025 we want 50% of the total water consumption of our own activities to come from rain, snow, hail, melt water and waste water. The aim is zero discharge of rainwater into the sewers and less use of 'new' tap water (mains water)

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32.8 %

rainwater and waste water
in our total water consumption in 2020

Stores

At store level we reduce our mains water consumption by recovering rainwater  for sanitary facilities and watering. This accounts for as much as 33% of the water consumption in the stores. By using less mains water, we use less groundwater and lower our water invoice. This ensures lower costs, and is therefore useful to ensure competitive prices at our store formulas. In addition, we are now also looking at the possibilities of treating the remaining rainwater at store sites.  

Production sites

Our meat processing activities at the Stroppen site and the Dassenveld distribution centre in Halle together account for about half of our total water consumption. That is why we make maximum use of treated water there.

Since 2001, we have treated the waste water from our industrial activities at Fine Food Meat Stroppen in a biological treatment plant. After treatment, the water has the quality of river water.

Biological treatment plant Fine Food Meat Stroppen Biological treatment plant: bacteria remove waste products from the water

Since 2014, a drinking water station has taken things to a higher level: part of the treated waste water is additionally treated into drinking water - under the approving eye of quality controller De Watergroep. This treated water flows directly back to the production site, where it can be used in the production process just like mains water. The reuse means we discharge much less waste water into the sewer and waste water treatment plants can work more efficiently. 

Drinking water station Fine Food Meat Stroppen The drinking water station recovers more than half of Fine Food Meat's waste water.

Since 2016 we also treat rainwater to drinking water at the same site. We collect it via a buffer on the roof of the buildings. Some of the water goes directly to the sanitary facilities, while another part is treated to drinking water quality at the PURA plant. The recovered rainwater has the same applications within meat processing as the treated waste water.

Cleaning machines at Fine Food Meat Stroppen The recycled water is used every day to clean machines and even for meat preparations

The treatment plants at Fine Food Meat Stroppen provide no less than: 

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109,199

recycled waste water
in 2020

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4,242

drinking water from rainwater
in 2020

Distribution and office spaces

At our Dassenveld distribution centre in Halle, we also collect rainwater in two buffers  with a capacity of 4,100 m³. It is treated by, among others, a sand and UV filter and then used for the sanitary facilities and in the crate washing installation. 

Crate washing installation Dassenveld The crate washing installation at our distribution centre uses treated rainwater

In 2022, a new water treatment plant will also be commissioned. It will treat industrial and sanitary waste water  for three sites in Halle:  Dassenveld distribution centre, the Wilgenveld headquarters  and the Elbeek site. In addition, the plant will also use the rainwater from Dassenveld to keep the water balance in check.  Later, the buildings of the nearby Hellebroek site may also be connected. With a production capacity of 11 m³ of drinking water per hour, the plant can treat 90,000 m³ of waste water into 81,000 m³ of drinking water every year. This will enable us to reduce our mains water consumption of these sites  by 90% from 2022 onwards. 

Three sites in Halle that account for a quarter of our group's total water consumption. By using recycled water there, our demand for mains water has drastically reduced. These three sites in Halle account for a quarter of our group's total water consumption. By using recycled water there, our demand for mains water has drastically reduced.
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