Abiotic risks of glycerine from biodiesel production process


biodiesel, feed, risk assessment, crude glycerine, methanol, sodium, ABP-products
First published in the EFSA Journal
16 December 2010
30 November 2010
Scientific Opinion

Following a request from the European Commission, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) was asked to deliver a scientific opinion on the abiotic risks for public and animal health of glycerine as co-product from the biodiesel production from Category 1 animal by-products (ABP) and vegetable oils. Crude glycerine is used as an energy-rich feed component in animal diets. Glycerine derived from biodiesel produced from vegetable oils may contain up to 0.5 % methanol and 1 % sodium, used as catalysts in the biodiesel production process. Inclusion rates of such produced glycerine at levels of up to 15 % in the diet of ruminants and up to 10 % in monogastric animals are well-tolerated and exerted no adverse effects on animal health. In contrast, these findings would need to be confirmed for crude glycerine derived from biodiesel production using feedstocks (input materials) other than vegetable oils, as the production process is slightly different. More importantly, no data are available on the levels of possible contaminants of crude glycerine derived from biodiesel production using recycled animal fats or animal by-products classified as category 1 materials due to chemical risk. Therefore, the Panel on Contaminants in the Food Chain recommends the collection of data on the presence of impurities and contaminants in crude glycerine from biodiesel production that is used as animal feed component.

Panel members at the time of adoption
Jan Alexander, Diane Benford, Alan Boobis, Sandra Ceccatelli, Jean-Pierre Cravedi, Daniel Doerge, Alessandro di Domenico, Eugenia Dogliotti, Lutz Edler, Peter Farmer, Metka Filipic, Johanna Fink-Gremmels, Peter Fürst, Thierry Guerin, Helle Katrine Knutsen, Miroslav Machala, Antonio Mutti, Josef Schlatter and Rolaf Van Leeuwen
Panel on Contaminants in the Food Chain
contam [at] efsa.europa.eu
EFSA Journal 2010;8(12):1934 [22 pp.].
Question Number
On request from
European Commission
Print on demand
Number of Pages