Veterinary Compliance Assistance


Carcass Disposal State Regulations


Depending on circumstances, large animal carcass disposal may be regulated by a state's solid waste, medical waste, agriculture, or emergency management regulations. If your state does not provide specific guidance or regulations relating to large animal carcass disposal, check with your local health department, or city/county laws and ordinances.

In addition, during emergency situations and disasters (e.g., blizzards, floods, hurricanes, mass die-offs, etc.), consult with your local emergency officials, your state emergency planning agency, or the state veterinarian, to determine approved methods of carcass disposal.

Applicable Agencies and Regulations for Kentucky

Kentucky State Board of Agriculture

Address: 32 Fountain Place, Frankfort, KY 40601

Contact Information:

Rules and Regulations: KRS 257.160: Disposition of carcasses. Must be disposed of within 48 hours, unless preserved in cold storage, by incineration, boiling, burying, rendering, landfilling or composting. Disposal options addressed

  • Rendering: By licensed rendering establishment.

  • Landfilling: In a contained landfill approved pursuant to KRS Chapter 224.

  • Burial: Burying with certain setbacks and lime.

  • Burning: Complete incineration.

  • Composting: Composting of the carcass in a facility according to the board's administrative regulations and approved in accordance with KRS Chapter 224.

  • Other Methods: Boiling the carcass continuously for 2 or more hours or any other scientifically-proven method approved by the board.

Rules and Regulations: Kentucky 302 KAR 20:052: Animal carcass composting. Describes animal carcass composting rules and regulations.

More Information

On-Farm Composting of Animal Mortalities - Bulletin ID-166 (Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service, 2007). Describes how to compost mortalities as well as rules and regulations

The Cornell Waste Management Institute (CWMI) maintains a database of carcass disposal state regulations promulgated by state environmental, agricultural and other agencies. There may be additional information on this site, not found on VetCA, that can be helpful to veterinarians, ranchers and farmers. Click here to access the CWMI information for Kentucky.

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