Society

Greek Yogurt By-Product Poses Danger for Waterways

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Though Greek yogurt provides many health benefits to those who consume it, it is actually a danger to the environment.

The watery by-product of the yogurt is toxic to the environment and is illegal to dump. Acid whey from the yogurt takes out the oxygen content in water and pollutes the waterways. This kills fish and other life in the water.

Greek yogurt manufacturers use three to four ounces of milk to make one ounce of Greek yogurt. The rest of it becomes acid whey. Manufacturers claim that 70 percent of the acid whey is sold to neighboring farmers as livestock feed.

But giving livestock the acid whey is dangerous, as it causes cows to develop gastrointestinal problems or digestive upset. 

With 150 million gallons of it being produced last year alone, manufacturers are faced with a growing problem of how to dispose of acid whey properly. 

They have explored augmenting the by-product and turning it into baby formula, but this has not been successful. 

As the popularity of Greek yogurt rises, so does the need to find an inexpensive and reliable form of disposal for the by-product.

"If we can figure out how to handle acid whey, we'll become a hero," a Greek yogurt recently said at New York's Yogurt Summit.

Sources: Inquisitr, NY Post