Alcohol From Icelandic Whey? It's More Likely Than You Think - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Alcohol From Icelandic Whey? It’s More Likely Than You Think

Published January 4, 2016

Photos by
Rebecca Siegel/Wikimedia Commons

Dairy farmers are exploring their options on how to make the most of their products, including making alcohol from whey.

The production of cheese leaves vast quantities of whey behind, RÚV reports, from which the protein is extracted to make protein supplement powder. What remains after this extraction can also be put to use, though, to produce numerous things.

While today, these leavings are used for the production of pig feed, Iceland Dairies (MS) is currently exploring their options as to what else to do with this fluid. It can be used to make fuel, for example, industrial spirits or – most profitable of all – ethanol, or consumable alcohol.

“We are trying to extract the valuable material which is in this whey,” Kristín Halldórsdóttir, the dairy manager for MS in Akureyri, told reporters. “There is a lot of dry material in it that can be used for other things.”

If the prospect of drinking alcohol made from milk whets your appetite, you may have a while yet to wait before you can try it. Research is currently only at the beginning stages, although MS is hoping for additional funding to conduct it.

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