Sustainability of Rendering

Rendering has a (hugely) Positive Environmental Impact

Only about 50% of an animal is considered edible by Americans, which means the other 50% is considered INEDIBLE.

Instead of wasting half of the meat we farm and buy, Rendering reclaims these unwanted “leftovers” and transforms them into ingredients for countless products — recycling 99% of this unwanted meat.

By recycling leftover animal material, renderers create valuable ingredients from resources that would otherwise be thrown away, taking up enormous amounts of precious landfill space.

Instead of wasting these leftovers through other disposal methods, renderers recycle the materials into 19 billion pounds of fat, oil and protein products.

Rendering not only creates alternative, sustainable fuels to power trucks, trains, water vessels and other vehicles but also nutritiously feeds cattle, hogs, turkeys, chickens, household pets and other animals. 

Renderers play an important role reducing food waste, sustainably recycling valuable agricultural resources and positively contributing to local, state and national and international  economies.

Inedible part of the stomach that is recycled in rendering

Rendering Leads to a Reduced Carbon Footprint

Rendering also protects the environment from the high greenhouse gas emissions of other disposal methods, reduces energy and water consumption, minimizes environmental impacts of animal agriculture and supports communities.

The environmental sustainability of rendering avoids at least 90% of potential greenhouse gas emissions compared with industrial composting and sequesters 5 times the amount of greenhouse gas emissions as it emits.

If all renderable product were sent to the landfill, all available space would be used in 4 years.

Sustainable impacts of rendering

Economic Sustainability of Rendering

The rendering industry is financially stable, secure and sustainable with $10 billion in annual economic contribution.
Workers are highly-skilled and well compensated and employee retention rates are high, leading to more stability and greater contributions to local communities.

Simple Fact: Rendering jobs cannot be exported due to the raw and perishable nature of the material our industry reclaims.

Recycling unused meat from animals

The North American Renderers Association (NARA) is an Equal Opportunity Employer. It does not discriminate in the terms and conditions of employment on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other factor prohibited by law.

As a participant in USDA programs, we share the commitment to comply with all federal, state and local civil rights laws and those of the USDA. More about this commitment is available on the USDA website page here.