Thursday, December 14, 2017

Microbes turn waste into fuel

Everybody loves eating greek yogurt, its great for you, packed with protein, and has plenty of probiotics in it to aid in digestion.  However, the process of creating the perfect yogurt formula creates a large amount of waste in the form of liquid whey.  In an article found on Science Daily, researchers have discovered a way to possibly turn this waste into biofuel or feedstock additives.  By using microbes to to break down the leftover fructose molecules into two more useful compounds such as caproic acid and caprylic acid.  Being able to break down this waste material means a better source of additives for feedstock of animals in the place of antibiotics.
This article interested me because I eat a lot of greek yogurt but did not know how much waste was actually created.  With researchers looking for new ways to turn waste into something useful there would be very little actual waste as the majority of the compounds needed to create greek yogurt have a purpose, whether it is to be put into the yogurt itself or to be sent elsewhere as another compound to be added to another formula.

1 comment:

  1. I've heard about several ways that microbes can break down certain materials to produce biofuels. There was the one that converted plastics into biofuel. It seems very useful to me, but after I see that they are discovered, there isn't a lot of follow up. Do they produce sufficient amounts of energy? And if they do, why are people not looking more into it and actually using it?