Minimising the livestock industry’s environmental burden


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Learning how livestock carcasses and by-products are processed is giving greater confidence to consumers that the threat of contamination cannot now enter the food chain – and that in addition the burden on the environment is being reduced.

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Minimising the livestock industry’s environmental burden

  1. 1. Digital Re-print January | February 2014 Minimising the livestock industry’s environmental burden Grain & Feed Milling Technology is published six times a year by Perendale Publishers Ltd of the United Kingdom. All data is published in good faith, based on information received, and while every care is taken to prevent inaccuracies, the publishers accept no liability for any errors or omissions or for the consequences of action taken on the basis of information published. ©Copyright 2014 Perendale Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior permission of the copyright owner. Printed by Perendale Publishers Ltd. ISSN: 1466-3872
  2. 2. F &Feed millinG technoloGy 44 | January - February 2014 Grain Minimising the livestock industry’s environmental burden GFMT interviews Sonac’s international sales manager Geert van Der velden The Netherlands L earning how livestock carcasses and by-products are processed is giving greater confidence to consumers that the threat of contamination cannot now enter the food chain – and that in addition the burden on the environment is being reduced. Animal protein for ruminants While in Europe there is currently no legal approval for the use of animal proteins in ruminant diets, there is a strong market for blood meals and haemoglobin powder in the dairy sector in the USA as it is a proven, valuable source of by-pass protein. “Here for example, we use a protective soybean meal that is heat treated as an alternative to animal proteins. “However, we do have one ruminant application: we sell a lot of animal fats into the milk replacer market for calves. There is a massive industry in The Netherlands for fattening young calves up to almost one year of age. They are only fed milk replacers so they can produce white meat which is considered a specialty here. These products are also sold to France and Italy as white veal.” Category One animals, those that die on farm including those with disease, whether it's a cow, chicken or a pig, triggers a sophisticated logistics collection and monitoring system whereby farmers use the internet to inform company Rendac who records, collects and delivers the carcass to it’s dedicated processing plant in Son, in The Netherlands “This is what we call Category One – this material will not return to the feed chain. It is mostly used for energy purposes and as such goes towards green energy initiatives. This is just one of the activities that we have here,” says Geert Van Der Velden, international sales manager for Sonac in The Netherlands. “We also have two Category Three lines in Son for products that can go back into feed. “One line is a hydrolyzed feather protein, which can be used in aqua feeds. “In addition we have a blood meal line, which is from mixed species. This product is not allowed for aqua feeds but instead is allowed in petfood and in fur animal feeds. These are Category Three products. By-products from animal manure “We also have a plant in Son to do fat refinery, where we process fats in order to make sustainable materials for bio diesel fuels. We are also currently in the process of building a plant to process pig manure – there has recently been new legislation that limits the amount of phosphates and nitrates that are allowed onto land. So if farmers want to produce more animals we provide a solution for their manure. “We have high stock densities within The Netherlands, and our farmers have to provide the government with a contract stating that the manure they produce is being processed correctly – we have currently contracted approximately 100 thousand tonnes of manure. “There are multiple phases in which we will produce different products. In the solid phase we will turn it into pellets and it is sold as an organic fertilizer, exported to countries that are short on organic materials. “When it is in the liquid phase it will be used in our biogas plants and used for electricity generation. “This is quite an impressive operation. We have a broad portfolio of different products and activities. For example, we are currently processing some eggshells, but as eggshells are commonly provided by hatcheries, there might be dead birds present. Therefore this is classed as Category Two material. “We process this material in a special way and then it is sent as feed for fur animals such as mink and foxes. This is a business forbidden in the UK and here. Some people don’t like it, but nevertheless there is a market for fur coats and these animals are still being farmed. “If we don’t produce it here, it will be produced in places such as Denmark, China, Poland or the Baltic States.”
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  4. 4. F &Feed millinG technoloGy 46 | January - February 2014 Protecting the environment “Basically, we are working out of a delta; if we cannot sell a product for a high price we must procure raw materials at a lower cost and minimize processing fees. “In general when we are looking at a supply chain, you want to find the product that sells at the highest price possible – as it allows you to provide your suppliers with a better return. It is better for the long-term sustainability of the animal supply chain. “At the same time we have to always pay attention to what we are putting into our environment. It is a burden on us, but we must always watch our environmental impact. “If we produce something with great care, you always want to ensure that it is used in the best possible way. I find that it is the main target we have in this industry. “Obviously meat, which is the major part of livestock rearing, is consumed and stands alone for what we provide. But we should ensure that all parts of the animal are taken proper care of when utilising their by-products. “Historically, we could say that the byproduct left over from the animal was relatively small. As in the old days you would have backyard slaughtering where individuals were processing the whole pig and using the parts for themselves. “But with the move to mass industrialization, you have a lot of by-products that no individual can take care of. For example in the UK everyone at one time ate black pudding; but now very few eat it. This illustrates one challenging aspect. Recently information came out of the UK that it is trying to get a movement going whereby by-products for ingredients such as lard are more extensively used by consumers. We like that idea, but these are mostly still niche developments. “Unfortunately the masses will still go to McDonalds and other fast food outlets. So we have to find the best applications in which to most effectively re-utilize the parts in an effective way; maybe pharmaceutical uses. Retailers are still cautious “What was relatively new to us was the reintroduction of animal proteins into aquafeed. It will become an additional application in poultry feed, but we are still waiting for EU approval, but the aquafeed approval is there nonetheless. “These are massive changes, and although it would be good to hop on it early – many retailers may not like the utilization of animal proteins. Many consumers still object to it, so these are the restrictions we must work around. The EU authorities have put restrictions on what can and cannot be used. For example there cannot be any contamination – no bovine DNA - it is extremely strict. The methods to analyze are PCR that are very sensitive. Because of this you have to organize dedicated slaughterhouses, transporters, people and then more dedicated transporters from the plant to customers. “Plants have to be dedicated. We need Grain to develop special lines and plants where we specifically supply the hydrolyzed phetaprotein for aquaculture, for example. We have another plant doing poultry meal, another doing poultry blood meal and yet another doing pork blood meal. Global markets for aqua Globally, Sonac’s sales breakdown by species is roughly 40 percent pig, 35 percent poultry and everything thats left goes towards aquafeeds. Most products are sold in Europe. “As a company our biggest footprint for aquafeed would be within Europe. However, I would say the largest market for aqua products would be China. Our Chinese operation is much smaller but sells quite a bit into the market. We see potential growth in this area in future. “Bigger companies, such as Skretting and Biomar are looking to acquire or expand operations in China. “Another example of a growing market is Australia where Sonac’s blood product plant services Skretting, which dominates 95% of that market in salmon production. The Australian company Ridley, in the Brisbane area, has two aquafeed plants as well. “We are hardly selling into Norway however – it is still without blood animal proteins. We look at countries with different species, like Denmark which has two production plants processing trout; Germany which has a plant, France, Poland, Italy, Greece – we also export occasionally to Turkey as well. “The Turkish market has grown huge recently with its trout, seabream and seabass production. Egypt is a hard market though as it does not import much from Europe.” The aquisition When asked if the aquisition by Darling will effect Sonac products in Europe, Mr Van Der Velden answers, “We still sell our products as Sonac and they will not become a part of the DarPro product line. “Nevertheless, we try to achieve synergies and see how we can come together – especially in the Asian markets. Because we are primarily active in separate markets - DarPro in North America and Sonac in Europe - we are hoping to bring proteins from both markets to Asia.” DarPro in comparison would be on an equal ratio of 1:1 with Sonac, with hardly any overlap in products, portfolio or geographic areas marketed to, he adds. When asked if there were opportunities to bring Sonac products to the USA, Mr Van Der Velden said, “ Yes and no – we do bring some special products to the USA, but more importantly is the OIE update for its qualifications for BSE risk. “The USA, Netherlands as well as Belgium have been classified as negliable risk. with regard to BSE. “This makes it far easier to export bovine material to the USA. This will be a major help for doing business from here to the USA – it will take about 33 months for this law to take effect, but then we will export more to the USA.” Darling International Inc. completes the VION ingredients acquisition - which includes feed industry supplier Sonac Darling International Inc with over 120 rendering processing plants, announced on January 8, 2014 that it had completed the planned acquisition of VION Ingredients, a division of VION Holding NV (a member of the VION Food Group), for approximately €1.6 billion in cash. VION Ingredients is a worldwide leader in the development and production of specialty ingredients from animal origin for applications in pharmaceuticals, food, feed, pet food, fertilizer and bioenergy. Headquartered in Son en Breugel, The Netherlands, VION Ingredients' global network of facilities on five continents covers all aspects of animal byproduct processing through six brands including Rendac (rendering), Sonac (proteins, fats, edible fats and blood products), Ecoson (green power), Rousselo (gelatin), CTH (natural casings) and Best Hides (hides). Vion Ingredients, now Darling Ingredients International had sales revenue at January 8, 2014 equated to €115 billion. Under the brand names of Darling the total company has combined sales revenues of approximately US$4billion. New markets include Nigeria for aquafeed and also South Africa for petfoods as well. “We plan to expand into South America, South East Asia and then possible Africa as our next target markets. When in South Africa I asked why they didn’t render their own poultry, relying on imports. This was because they eat all the by-products locally, leaving nothing for reworking.” In China Sonac provide blood products exclusively for feed – however, it is hoping to develop the blood pudding market for the food sector “While blood pudding isn’t popular in Europe, it is still very popular in China and South East Asia,” he adds.
  5. 5. LINKS January - February 2014 This digital Re-print is part of the January | February 2014 edition of Grain & Feed Milling Technology magazine. Content from the magazine is available to view free-of-charge, both as a full online magazine on our website, and as an archive of individual features on the docstoc website. Please click here to view our other publications on first published in 1891 • • Having no choice is not reasonable The quest for a healthier snack Design of an efficient intake pit dedusting system Silos special: Bulk storage challenges • Contact the GFMT Team • Subscribe to GFMT NIR: • Keep running costs down the state-of-the-art in technology • Visit the GFMT website In this issue: • • • See the full issue Production control in rapeseed processing using NIR technology operating en-masse chain conveyors • Getting your dies and rolls re-worked locally to global standards INCORPORATING PORTS, DISTRIBUTION AND FORMULATION A subscription magazine for the global flour & feed milling industries - first published in 1891 To purchase a paper copy of the magazine, or to subscribe to the paper edition please contact our Circulation and Subscriptions Manager on the link adove. INFORMATION FOR ADVERTISERS - CLICK HERE Article reprints All Grain & Feed Milling Tecchnology feature articles can be re-printed as a 4 or 8 page booklets (these have been used as point of sale materials, promotional materials for shows and exhibitions etc). If you are interested in getting this article re-printed please contact the GFMT team for more information on - Tel: +44 1242 267707 - Email: or visit