Carcass rendering systems for farm mortalities: A review

A. Kalbasi-Ashtari, M. M. Schutz, B. W. Auvermann

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Improper animal-mortality disposal may allow pathogenic microorganisms to spread diseases in soil, plants, animals, and to humans; and resulting odor reduces the quality of life for neighbors. Health hazards posed by neglect in carcass disposal would be pronounced in the event of a natural catastrophe, disease outbreak or intentional depopulation of herds or flocks. Conventional rendering systems have been utilized for the last two decades to convert various animal carcasses to different products. However, considerations regarding prion diseases will further shape the rendering industry. New rendering technologies that convert suspected prion-infected animal tissues into tallow and protein for use as a bio-fuel and fertilizer, respectively, are beginning to emerge. This paper reviews the rendering industry and new methods for carcass rendering to produce safe and economically valuable products while minimizing impacts on public safety and environmental quality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-211
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering and Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2008


  • Animal mortality
  • Carcass disposal
  • Livestock
  • Meat and bone meal
  • Prion disease
  • Rendering


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