Argentina Hosts First Rendering Congress - WRO Report

    There is always an incentive that leads one to take action. If you are reading Render magazine, it is not a random situation. If you are reading this article, you are expressing interest in the rendering industry, or more specifically, on what the World Renderers Organization (WRO) wants to communicate. In any case, welcome.

    This article describes the first step of a new directive WRO is taking after being accepted last October during the National Renderers Association (NRA) convention in Naples, FL. There is much going on that most individuals probably never thought as important in the global rendering industry. 

    In early December 2013, the very first congress on Argentinian animal by-products was held at the beautiful venue of Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina. The congress was organized by Argentina’s Chamber of Livestock Sub-products from Buenos Aires, whose president is Jorge Rossotti.

    Surrounded by a leading group of renderers from Argentina, Rossotti and Evelino Roman, general manager of the chamber, led an excellent congress where individuals from government, equipment manufacturers, and service solutions for the industry along with nutritionists and renderers had the opportunity to reflect upon the best ways to form relationships for long-term collaboration. I received an invitation to participate in the congress as a representative of WRO, and gave a presentation providing insight of the organization entitled, “WRO as a global coordinator for strengthening the rendering industry worldwide.” 

    The presentation provided a general view of the domain of action where WRO exists, its vision, mission, and collaboration agreements with other organizations that have presence in the establishment and enforcement of rules to maintain a safe food and feed chain. Some of those organizations include the World Organization for Animal Health, World Health Organization (WHO), World Trade Organization, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, International Feed Industry Federation, Global Aquaculture Alliance, and CODEX Alimentarius, brought forth by WHO and FAO.

    To much surprise, most of the participants in the congress were not aware of the existence of WRO. It was through the presentation that listeners began to understand the necessity to be part of the group, collaborating as renderers with their country association and enabling them to support WRO.

    Other participants recognized the necessity to have representation on global forums. For members of the animal health and environmental control of Argentina´s government, the fact of having their local industry in connection with a global rendering coordinator opened a positive perception on the efforts local renderers are doing to maintain their industry in the frontier of knowledge and best manufacturing practices. 

    A group of lawmakers also attended the congress, explaining how laws on environmental care of air and water quality were established in Argentina and how renderers must cope with them. For the lawmakers, it was valuable to know that WRO can serve as a reference when new concerns arise and new legislations are designed for renderers in Latin American countries. At the end of the conference, there was opportunity to comment that coherence between science and legislation was fundamental. 

    Another group concerned with global practices was traders, whose interest was to obtain information on restrictions to move rendered products between countries in Latin America and the rest of the world. This is another area where WRO can provide assistance to member countries in having at-hand enough information to facilitate commerce of rendered products.

    Something that attracted the attention of renderers and authorities was a presentation given by Dr. Romanella Giannitti, a woman in charge of her family rendering business, who spoke about the environmental damages possible during one day without a rendering plant. Volumes expressed were around 200 metric tons per day of raw material, enough to make everyone reflect on the importance each operation has on a daily basis for the welfare of the environment.

    Now, why is all this important to share with you? As we all know, the world is changing fast enough to make industries obsolete. Yet sometimes the efforts renderers are making to remain viable and successful within this changing market goes unnoticed. The Argentinian chamber that organized this first congress was founded 90 years ago! Yes, 90 years ago! This is the first time the organization has gotten together to organize a congress.

    Again, this was not a random situation. Renderers in Argentina are concerned about how to bring themselves onto an international stage and demonstrate their existence and capabilities. At the past three NRA conferences in the United States, Argentinians Vicente and Roberto Materia as well as Diego Lopez and Jaime Sasson have attended with the intention to learn and introduce themselves to the global rendering community. Surprise again – Vicente and Roberto they have been in rendering for 50 years and are also producing soap and fatty acids that are sold in North America and Europe. Diego Lopez has a rendering integrated with shortenings manufacture since 40 years ago and Jaime Sasson has a rendering operation running since 50 years ago. All of them are  second generation of their family business, leading them into the future.

    There are many cases where Argentinian (?) renderers have evolved and adopted a vertical integration model, bringing value-added products to the market. In some cases, they are completely integrated with animal production, feed lots, slaughterhouses, rendering, and the manufacturing of shortenings. Argentina is the second largest producer of rendered products in Latin America following Brazil.

    During 2014, there will be a number of congresses held that WRO will attend and subsequently share with the readers of Render. The organization’s commitment for this year is to represent and communicate to the general public what the rendering industry does on a global level and why it remains the greenest industry, even today when there are other industries recycling and taking care of the environment. 

    I hope you enjoyed this article and take time to read some of the presentations shared by the Argentinian renderers at www.camsubprodganaderos.com.ar. It is possible WRO could make a similar impact for your country. Only learning more about other countries’ efforts can we enable a new future of possibilities for the global industry.

 By Fernando Mendizabal Fernandez, Second Vice President, WRO