Degradation of Chicken Feathers: A ReviewAuthor(s): Pahua-Ramos ME, Hernandez-Melchor DJ, Camacho-Perez B and Quezada-Cruz M
The amount of chicken feathers generated as waste from the poultry industry in the last decade has become of technological interest for many researchers regarding both its treatment and application. At a worldwide level, billions of tons of feathers are produced due to the consumption of poultry and, consequently, leading to problems as they are affecting public health and the environment. Biodegradation processes of chicken feathers with the greatest international impact use pure strains, which have been isolated from wastes of poultry farms. Among the strains with the best degradation efficiency (100% in 1 to 7 days) are: Bacillus sp., Kocuria sp., Pseudomonas sp. and Fervidobacterium sp. At present, microbial consortia or modified strains are also used to increase the efficiency and profitability of biodegradation. Physicochemical methods include alkaline hydrolysis or alkaline-acid hydrolysis, mixture of oleic substances like soy and glycerol, microwaving, pyrolysis and carbonization. After treatment of poultry waste through different methods, relevant by-products like enzymes, amino acids, anti-oxidant, biofuels, biofertilizers, biopolymers, micro-and macro-particles, flame retardant bases, dielectric materials, super-condensers, among others, are obtained. Hence, the objective of this review is to analyze the different biological and physicochemical methods used for the degradation of chicken feathers emphasizing procurement of byproducts and applications in the biotechnological realm.