Humans’ relationship with animals has shaped our evolution and our history. Animals have given us food, clothing, companionship and whole livelihoods. While today most animals that are kept as livestock are bred for meat or dairy purposes, there are a whole host of animal by-products that make their way into everyday life – sometimes in surprising forms!

What are animal by-products? In simply definition animal by-products are carcasses and parts of carcasses from slaughterhouses, animal shelters, zoos and veterinarians, and products of animal origin not intended for human consumption, including catering waste.

These products may go through a process known as rendering to be made into human and non-human foodstuffs, fats, and other materials that can be sold to make commercial products such as cosmetics, paint, cleaners, polishes, glue, soap and ink.

It is worthy of note that in the European Union, animal by-products are defined as materials derived from animals that cannot be consumed. This means in European countries, milk, eggs, and fats are not livestock by-products but in the United States of America, they are considered by-products.

Nevertheless, animal by-products are for human use. Now let me share with you 32 lust of animal by-products and also make mention their uses.


Animal by-products list

  1. Fresh meat and offal
  2. Fish, shellfish and fish products
  3. Lard and rendered fats
  4. Animal casings
  5. Milk
  6. Whey
  7. Eggs
  8. Honey
  9. Semen, embryos, manure, blood and blood products
  10. Bones, bone products and gelatine
  11. Hides and skins
  12. Bristles, wool, hair and leathers
  13. Hay and straw
  14. Insect pupae
  15. Venom
  16. Swiftlets Nest
  17. Shellac
  18. L-cysteine
  19. Civet oil
  20. Civet coffee (Kopi luwak)
  21. Limulus amebocyte lysate
  22. Mink oil
  23. Ambergris
  24. Adrenaline
  25. Wool
  26. Catgut
  27. Beeswax
  28. Castoreum
  29. Lanolin
  30. Isinglass
  31. Carmine dye
  32. Rennet
  33. Silkworms


Examples of what these animal by-products are used for:

Blood from slaughtered animal are used as adhesive in plywood, also found in cheese-making, foam rubber, intravenous feedings, and medicines.

Bone Meal.
Bone when crused are used for fertilizers, vitamins and supplements as well as a source toothpaste.

Honey are eating for their nutrient and Food used as a colouring and an emollient in cosmetics and as a flavouring in foods.

Fat from hog abdomens. Lard are used in making shaving creams, soaps, cosmetics. In baked goods, French fries, refried beans, and many other foods. Alternatives: pure vegetable fats or oils.

Animal skin are used to make wallets, handbags, furniture and car upholstery, shoes, etc. Alternatives: cotton, canvas, nylon, vinyl, Ultrasuede, pleather, other synthetics.

Silk is the shiny fibre made by silkworms to form their cocoons. Worms are boiled in their cocoons to get the silk. Used in cloth.

From all we have written, we can categorically say that human uses of animals include:

  • Food
  • Clothing and textiles
  • Work and transport
  • Research
  • Medicine
  • Hunting
  • Pets



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