Waste not, want not: how one Kiwi hotel is turning its food waste to water

by | Dec 26, 2018 | General News

The Cordis, Auckland embracing a systemcapable of turning discarded food waste into water.

For the past 12 months, the Cordis, Auckland hotel has embraced a process that turns food waste into water.

The system is capable of turning 1,000 kg of discarded food waste into water every 24 hours.

Standard of the future?

To do this, the hotel uses a technique called ORCA. The method involves using a stainless steel container with a door through which employees deposit food waste.

The machine next goes on to consume waste as if it were food, mimicking the process of human digestion. This complex scientific process has the potential to one day become standard among environmentally-conscious hotels.

The ORCA machine creates a perfect biological environment for microorganisms to digest food waste, a process that ultimately converts it to water which is carried away through the sewers, reducing the amount of physical waste the hotel produces.

“We have prioritised waste minimisation and diversion of organic wastes to landfill as a major operational focus. All departments follow a waste management hierarchy policy to reduce, reuse, recycle and recover and all our food waste has been diverted from landfill, now processed onsite by the ORCA technology,” Franz Mascarenhas, managing director, Cordis, Auckland told the media.

Fit for New Zealand, fit for the world

What this process has enabled the hotel to do is eliminate the need to truck off its food waste to a landfill. It also reduces carbon emissions by eliminating associated road use and composting.

Given that New Zealand is an island nation with limited space, one can see how this is an excellent fit for a property like the Cordis, Auckland. The technology will no doubt be of interest to luxury hotels the world over.

In recent years, surveys show modern guests being concerned about the environmental footprint of the properties in which they spend their business trips and vacations.

Let’s take a look at a few other projects currently underway in New Zeland:

Cordis Auckland

Hobson Street Hotel

Intercontinental Auckland


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