From Farm to Fork, water is present all the way. And so is Kurita.

Picture of Joao Faria
Joao Faria

F&B Business Development Manager

Water is an indispensable element in the production of food and beverages, playing a vital role in the entire food supply chain, from the farm to our tables. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that the water used is clean and safe for consumption and sourced sustainably (risk of wind-up), a critical factor that has become increasingly important in recent years due to the more frequent and severe droughts.

In agriculture, water is used in various practices, including crop irrigation and animal husbandry for drinking, cooling, and cleaning. The water for irrigation is typically sourced from natural sources like rivers or underground wells, and it is crucial to ensure that it is free from harmful chemicals and bacteria, which may make it unsafe for human consumption. Most of the raw products for the food and beverage industry are supplied from the fields.

At the processing plant, water is critical in many processes that are essential to produce high-quality food and beverages. It is used directly in cooking procedures such as steam cooking, boiling, and pasteurization/sterilization and for washing and disinfecting products like potatoes or fruits. Indirectly, water is used in steam production, cooling processes, water preparation (RO, UF, disinfection, etc.), and wastewater treatment.

Water is also an ingredient in many food and beverage products, such as soft drinks, juices, sports drinks, beer, and other alcoholic beverages. Also, water is often used as an ingredient in food like cookies, processed meat or ready meals. As an ingredient, it must have safe quality for consumption and the appropriate organoleptic characteristics for the product being manufactured and later consumed. 

Additionally, water is used in cleaning, rinsing, and disinfecting the equipment and surfaces in food and beverage processing plants to prevent contamination and ensure F&B standard quality. The consumption of water for CIP and COP cleaning can be as much as double the weight of the production, such as using more than 2 liters of water for cleaning and sanitation procedures for every 1 kg of meat produced.


Ensuring water availability for the future

The significance of water in the food and beverage industry is undeniable. Access to safe and clean water is essential to ensure the health and safety of consumers and maintain the quality of food and beverages. The industry must prioritize the responsible use and management of water resources to ensure their availability for generations to come.

As the world population and the F&B industry continue to grow, the pressure on water resources will increase, and companies are looking for ways to minimize their water usage and reduce their impact on natural resources. Several innovative and sustainable practices are being employed to manage water consumption effectively.

The industry must continue to innovate and implement sustainable practices, with the primary goal being the effective use of the 3 R’s rule for water: 

  • reduce consumption 
  • reuse when possible
  • recycle water always

In conclusion, water is an essential component of the food and beverage industry, and its conservation is crucial for the sustainability of the sector, the environment, and humanity as a whole. Therefore, the responsible use and management of water resources must be a priority to ensure a long-term supply of safe, high-quality food and beverages for generations to come.

At Kurita, we study the properties of water to master them to create an environment in which nature and humanity are in harmony, helping the entire chain of the F&B industry achieve it. 

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