Cash in on used cooking oil
WHEN you are done deep-frying at home, hold on before pouring the spent cooking oil down the sink. There is some money to be made yet.
You can sell that oil for 50 sen to RM1.50 per kg and Seberang Prai Municipal Council (MPSP) has made arrangements for collectors to take from high-rise blocks, residents associations and villages.
MPSP secretary Rosnani Mahmod said the combined consumption rate of flat residents, for example, created the required economy of scale for collectors to drop by.
“We will put a 200-litre drum at the ground floor for all the households to leave their oil.
“The money earned can be used to maintain facilities. But best of all, this keeps the oil out of the sewerage and drains,” she said.
According to her, oil in the public drainage system makes anaerobic bacteria grow, creating a rancid stench during dry weather and can clog drainpipes.
Rosnani was recently at the launch of the state’s third high-rise homes cooking oil collection effort in Sri Mekar 1 apartments in Mak Mandin, Butterworth.
The other two are in Taman Bagan Lalang and Tanjung Indah apartments.
Also present was state Environment Committee chairman Phee Boon Poh who announced that cooking oil recycling would become a statewide affair soon as another step towards a holistic urban waste disposal system in Penang.
Where will your used cooking oil go? Europeans love it as bio-diesel.
Bio-diesel maker Khenny Chong said the price of diesel was much higher there.
“Conventional diesel is RM6 to RM7 per litre in countries like France, Germany and Britain as of this month, so bio-diesel from cooking oil is considered a cheap alternative.
“We will filter your cooking oil at a high-tech level, add methanol and ship it to Europe in batches of 500 to 3,000 tonnes each time,” he said.
He said his company, Fatbusta Asia Pacific Sdn Bhd, would pay for the used oil based on the quality.
“Some people let their oil be tainted with water, soap or bits of food.
“We are happy to pay more if the oil is sieved, free of water and the volume is large, such as the combined collection of high-rise homes,” he added.
Despite collecting used cooking oil from Penang, Kedah and Perlis for the last six years, Chong said he estimated that less than 20% of the cooking oil used in the region was recycled.
Anyone interested in selling used cooking oil can email him ([email protected]) or contact the local authorities.
Phee warned of collectors of the shady kind.
“Three years ago, we stopped a lorry that was collecting used cooking oil.
“We discovered that the operator mixed it with new oil and re-bottle it as cheap cooking oil for the low-income groups.
“That is grievously wrong from the standpoint of health, culture and religion. We took serious action then.”
Phee said used cooking oil could only be collected for making bio-diesel and soap.