â€œWe believe it’s a win for our energy independence, it’s a win for our environment, and we believe it will be a big win for our shareholders as well,” said Jeff Webster, an official with Tyson’s
Corporate Strategy and Development team.
Animal fat is cheaper than vegetable oils, which are currently used for biodiesel production.
Webster said that Tyson, as a low-cost producer of animal fat, is an attractive potential fuel source. The company is also investigating the possibility of turning poultry litter into fuel.
Tyson officials also said they expect announcements next year regarding joint-venture meat projects in China and South America.
“The opportunity here [China] is to expand our current joint-venture footprint and be the first company to offer a full line of poultry products,” said Rick Greubel, group vice-president in Tyson’s international unit.
The expansion into China is based on the country’s growing economy and large population, he said.
A joint venture poultry operation with Brazil is also expected in the new year, driven by low-cost grain, low labour costs, and access to the European market, he said.
The company also intends to expand its poultry operations in Mexico.
“Per capita consumption is less than 60 percent of the US, and is growing per annum and that is in poultry,” Greubel said of Mexico.