The economic impact of the rendering industry is significant as the manufacture and trade in rendered products is an important component of the agricultural economy of the United States.
During 2011, 8.4 million tons of rendered products were produced, up 1.3% from 2010. The average price of rendered fats and greases was at an all-time record high in 2011 (April 2012 Render magazine), government trade data for 2011 was finalized and published in 2012, found here.
There are other benefits that are more difficult to quantify. Some restaurants produce large volumes of used cooking grease. If the grease is improperly disposed of down the drain, there are costs to the city in damaged sewer lines and water treatment issues. Biodiesel production reduces the fossil fuel dependence and use. Rendered protein products can be used for fertilizer or as a soil conditioner, providing an alternative to chemical fertilizers. Rendering has a large economic benefit.
For information regarding the economic impact of regulations on the US rendering industry, please click on the links in the right sidebar.