Recycling food and agriculture by-products to mitigate climate change: a review

Ahmed K. Rashwan, Haotian Bai, Ahmed I. Osman*, Kamel M. Eltohamy, Zhonghao Chen, Hala A. Younis, Ahmed Al-Fatesh, David W. Rooney, Pow Seng Yap*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Food loss and waste is a major issue affecting food security, environmental pollution, producer profitability, consumer prices, and climate change. About 1.3 billion tons of food products are yearly lost globally, with China producing approximately 20 million tons of soybean dregs annually. Here, we review food and agricultural byproducts with emphasis on the strategies to convert this waste into valuable materials. Byproducts can be used for animal and plant nutrition, biogas production, food, extraction of oils and bioactive substances, and production of vinegar, wine, edible coatings and organic fertilizers. For instance, bioactive compounds represent approximately 8–20% of apple pomace, 5–17% of orange peel, 10–25% of grape seeds, 3–15% of pomegranate peel, and 2–13% of date palm seeds. Similarly, the pharmaceutical industry uses approximately 6.5% of the total output of gelatin derived from fish bones and animal skin. Animals fed with pomegranate peel and olive pomace improved the concentration of deoxyribonucleic acid and protein, the litter size, the milk yield, and nest characteristics. Biogas production amounts to 57.1% using soybean residue, 53.7% using papaya peel, and 49.1% using sugarcane bagasse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3351-3375
Number of pages25
JournalEnvironmental Chemistry Letters
Issue number6
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023


  • Animal nutrition
  • Biogas
  • By-products
  • Climate change
  • Food applications
  • Plant nutrition


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