Bhubaneswar: October 2: To spread awareness about the ill-effects of reusing cooking oil, a mass awareness campaign on RUCO (Repurpose Used Cooking Oil) is being undertaken by the Oil Marketing Companies, under the aegis of Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoP&NG). The event is being flagged off at New Delhi and 100 more cities today i.e. 2nd October 2019 to mark the 150th birth anniversary of Father of Nation, Mahatma Gandhi.
In each of the cities, LPG delivery vehicles are being deployed to spread awareness amongst consumers, households, and Food Business Operators (FBOs) to create a movement towards a healthier India.
The practice of reheating cooking oil or using the same cooking oil for frying is common. Cooking oil is often repeatedly used by topping it up with fresh oil. Generally, big food businesses involved in the manufacturing of fried foods dispose of their used cooking oil (UCO) for industrial purposes (soap manufacture, etc.) but sometimes it finds way to small food vendors at cheap prices. At household level or by road-side vendors, the UCO is discarded in an environmentally hazardous manner blocking the sewerage and drainage systems. Therefore, in order to safeguard public health, FSSAI has notified the limit of Total Polar compounds (TPC) to be not more than 25% beyond which the oil is unsafe for human consumption. Higher level of TPC in cooking oil leads to health issues like hypertension, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer’s and liver diseases. One of the studies also noticed high levels of glucose, creatinine and cholesterol with declined levels of protein and albumin in re-used cooking oil.
As used cooking oil is considered the most reasonable feed stock for biodiesel production, it is planned to redirect the used cooking oil from the food business operators for production of Bio-diesel. The benefits of converting UCO to biodiesel are Health Benefits, Cleaner Environment, Reduce Import Dependency and Infrastructural Investment in Rural Areas