Rendering is the cooking and drying of animal by-products that remain after removing the meat people eat.
People use rendered products every day in soaps, paints, varnishes, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, shaving cream, deodorant, crayons, leather (handbags, car seats, furniture), lubricants, caulking compounds, candles, cleaners, paints, perfumes, polishes, rubber products, plastics, fertilizers and even explosives. Many people just don’t realize it.
Rendering produces valuable fats and proteins that improve the nutrition in foods used by consumers and farmers to feed their pets as well as livestock, poultry and fish.
Renderers pick up the nation’s used restaurant cooking grease/oil, and clean and recycle it into ingredients for animal feed, biodiesel and renewable diesel for cars, trucks, airplanes and other equipment.
Recycling of animal by-products sequesters at least five times as much greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) as it emits. Rendering produces far fewer emissions than landfilling or composting. Rendered products help animal agriculture and other customers reduce their environmental footprints and become more sustainable. If all renderable products were landfilled, the entire available space would be full in four years and pose a serious public health threat.
High cooking temperatures used in rendering assure animal food and consumer safety to protect against bacteria, viruses and other safety hazards. Meeting customer needs for quality and safety is a high priority.
Renderers comply with all required federal, state and local regulations and laws. They conduct hazard analyses, control food safety hazards, and use good manufacturing practices in their Rendering Code of Practice stewardship program. This Code of Practice fully complies with new FDA rules under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).
Rendering is a high-volume, high-tech industry. North American renderers collect 60 billion pounds of raw materials a year. Renderers recycle raw materials by cooking and drying these products into 11 billion pounds of fats/oils and 10 billion pounds of protein each year.
Rendering plants require highly trained workers who use high-tech controls to operate high-temperature cookers, centrifuges and presses. Renderers have a high labor retention rate.
The rendering industry transports 44 billion pounds of products, mostly by truck. Renderers own and control some of the largest private trucking fleets in the country.
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