Researchers turn chicken fat into biodiesel

| Friday, December 02, 2005

If researchers at the University of Arkansas are correct, future orders at KFC could include a bucket of wings, a side of biscuits and, oh yeah, a fill-up the tank while you’re at it.

Researchers at the university say they have developed a process that turns chicken fat into biodiesel fuel.

R.E. Babcock, a professor of chemical engineering at the school, told The Associated Press that chicken-fat fuels are better for both the environment and for engines.

“They burn better, create less particulate matter and actually lubricate and clean things like cylinders, pistons and fuel lines,” he said.

The researchers also claim that chicken fat can be a less expensive substitute for more traditional biodiesel sources, such as soybean oil, because it is available at a lower cost.

However, the process is still in the early research stages and is a long way from being marketed.

Michael Popp, an associate professor of agricultural economics, told The AP that it is too early to tell if making biodiesel from chicken fat is economically feasible.