Optimal utilization of by-products

Ole  Damgaard

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One pig - 185 products

Optimal utilization of by-products

Case stories with potential profit from real life projects

The meat industry pays close to 2 Euros per kg carcass for all parts of the carcass – they might as well get the most profit out of the 5th quarter!

A carcass consists of around 185 parts.

  • Are you addressing the right market option?
  • Could parts be upgraded to another category?
  • Are you obtaining the optimal yields and quality?

You might say that your 5th quarter is processed by an external party, but supplying higher volumes of better quality and of higher value should provide you a benefit.

A few examples from various real life projects:

Gall bladder

Case 1: Gall bladder

Poor cutting during removal. Trimming too much leading to liver on the gall bladder causing yield loss and excessive payment for waste.

Potential profit: 11,000 EUR/year.

Hearts Bi-products

Case 2: Hearts, Kidneys and Aorta

Hearts: Damaging hearts at the slaughter line and further during inspection causing decrease in yield and downgrading of product.

Kidneys Bi-products

Kidneys: Cutting kidneys too deep and too much. This leads to a loss due to production of a product that is not optimal.

Aorta - Bi-products

Aorta: Poor instructions leading to sub-optimal cutting leading to loss of product and too much waste, which is a cost.

Potential profit: 200,000 EUR/year.

Upgrading category 3

Case 3: Upgrading category 3 products

Improved utilization of the whole throat and trachea leads to reduced costs for disposal and increased income.

Potential profit: 186,000 EUR/year.

Heads and feet - bi products

Case 4: Heads & feet

Improved quality of downgraded heads and feet. Training of operators to meet product specifications.

Potential profit: 1,900,000 EUR/year.

Damaged liver and hearts 200

Case 5: Damaged liver & hearts

Poor processing leading to defective liver and hearts. Products downgraded to category 3.

Potential profit: 175,000 EUR/year.


  • Production analysis and identification of potential gain
  • Improvement of efficiency in processing of by-products
  • Profit improvements through yields and alternative usages
  • Upgrade of products
  • Design and layout projects of processes
  • Improvement of chilling and freezing processes
  • Training of operators