The performance of an Expanded Granular Sludge Bed (EGSB) reactor for treating slaughterhouse wastewater under mesophilic conditions (35°C), was investigated. The reactor was inoculated with granular sludge from an anaerobic reactor of a brewery factory. The averaged COD removal percentages were 67% for total organic loading rates (BV.TCOD) up to 15 kg COD m−3 d−1 and a hydraulic retention time (HRT) of 5 h. Total suspended solids (TSS) were 90% removed for total solids loads of 6 kg TSS m−3 d−1. Fats were 85% removed and no accumulation of fats on the sludge was observed. The specific methanogenic activity of the sludge, after 140 days, was about three times higher than the sludge inoculated into the reactor. The sludge activity did not significantly change after one year of work. These findings indicate that the anaerobic treatment of slaughterhouse wastewater in an EGSB system appears to be a feasible option.

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