Marianela Rodríguez (Ferrol, 1970) is the directress of Gesuga, Xestora de Subprodutos de Galicia, located in Cerceda.

– How was Gesuga born?

-It was born in 2002, above all because of the bovine spongiform encephalopathy disease, which everybody knows as the mad cow disease. This point marked a before and an after in the treatment of meat by-products. We are dedicated to this, the treatment of by-products.

– In addition, you count with a Nr.1 category transformation plant. What does this mean?

-By-products have different categories. Nr.1 category deals about processing those by-products that must get out of the food chain, that is to say, it is about giving them a process that guarantees their not returning into the food chain.

– Since when does it operate?

-Since the year 2005. When it started we processed about 10 tons an hour and now we process 20. We have capacity for about 400 tons a day.

– Is the environment helped in this way?

-Indeed it is, we ought to think that these by-products, were they not given this type of outlet or treatment, would have to have another destination. Before the entering into force of the regulation of 2002, what was most commonly done was their burial, in what respects to livestock farms. We, besides by-products from livestock farms, also collect from food industries. We should think what would happen with these by-products; in the past those that went out of the chain food had a direct destination to fats and flour, which are the resulting by-products, entering again the food chain being commercialized for fodder. At present this is prohibited in what refers to Nr.1 category.

– What products are obtained from transformation?

-Two basically, meat flours and animal fats. Meat flours, by law, because of their being Nr.1 category, and to guarantee that they go out of the chain food, are destined to incineration, to authorized agents. At present, cement plants are fundamental as they use them as fuel. They incinerate them, let’s say, as a combustion system. With animal fats we have two destinations. On one hand, our own, the one we use to burn them and generate thermal energy, vapour; on the other, we send them to authorized biodiesel plants.

– What amount of revaluable by-products is produced each day?

-Of meat flours, an average of 50 tons a day, and of fat, 20 tons a day. What we also do, before entering the transformation chain, what is the bovine chain, bovines which we collect from livestock farms, previous to their elimination we skin them. At the moment we are extracting furs from about one hundred bovines daily, furs that then are taken to our own salting thermal plant in order to commercialize them afterwards.

– How important do you consider that companies become aware about the caring of the environment?

-I think that we and all companies think that it is fundamental that we all enter this system of caring for the environment, which is the one in which we all have to coexist. Nowadays I think that the majority of companies are aware of the need of helping the environment.

– You also count with a declaration on quality, environment, energy efficiency, sustainability and safety and health at the work place.

-Yes, I think that for all of us making part of this company this is very important. Not only for having the quality seal, which is effectively important, because it is an image in and out of the country. We think that it is a continuous improvement, controlling the quality system, being able to control all activities … that control process helps you to know where you can make things better, where you can emphasize to give the customer a better service, save fuel, thermal energy, electric power, improve the situation of the workers in the company… everything that is controllable can always be made better.

La Voz de Galicia, 2nd May, 2016