Jatropha Biodiesel Economics Could Be Transformed by New Seedcake Purification Method

jatropha curcas image

Jatropha seedcake theoretically has the potential to be used for animal feed, but only if it is purified to remove toxins. Image: Carbon Capture

For all of the promise that Jatropha seeds have in making biodiesel, the fact remains that much of the hype regarding using the seedcake leftover from oil extraction for animal feed has been just that, hype. The toxicity of the stuff doesn't matter for fertilizer, but it sure does if you want to feed it to animals. Well, D1 Oils has announced that it has developed and is patenting a process whereby raw jatropha oil can be produced and, at the same time, the seedcake can be purified:Currently D1 is scaling up the process so that sufficient quantities of the purified seedcake are produced so that field trials can be done on palatability and digestibility, animal growth and "other performance indicators." If regulatory approvals go as planned, the technology could be available by 2010.

Selling Seedcake as Animal Feed Opens Up Additional Revenue Stream for Producers
The bigger thing though (especially for D1, which has had more than its share of financial ups and downs), is that if this procedure can be commercialized it will provide an additional revenue stream. Ben Good, CEO of D1 Oils:

Producing material that can be used as feed will transform the economics of Jatropha planting. Untreated jatropha seedcake is presently a low value by-product, but treated meal that is suitable for animal feed could have a market value equivalent to soya bean meal, currently worth around £300 per tonne. It also has the potential to provide farmers in the developing world with a new source of feed for their animals, widening the positive impact of Jatropha production on rural communities...

More: D1 Oils

via: Biofuels Digest
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