Aug 2, 2022 - News

Ask Axios: What happens to the butter cow after the fair?

Two cows and their handlers sculpted in butter
This year's butter sculpture celebrates Ohio's agricultural heritage. Photo: Tyler Buchanan/Axios

We're back with another installment of Ask Axios, where we answer your burning questions about our area.

  • Mark M. asks: In all my years in Columbus and attending the fair, one pressing question has eluded me. What becomes of the butter sculptures when the fair is done?

👋 Alissa here. I'm glad I'm not the only one wondering what happens to all that butter.

  • So I reached out to Jenny Crabtree, spokesperson for the American Dairy Association Mideast, which sponsors the Ohio State Fair's annual display.

What's next: The butter is recycled. Along with cooking grease, local companies refine it into non-edible items like soap, tires and grease for metal forging. Columbus-based OP Recycling will complete the job this year.

Of note: "The butter is definitely not fit for consumption after it's been worked by the artists’ hands into the sculptures and on display for several weeks," Crabtree says.

Reminder: If you haven't seen this year's record-breaking butter sculptures yet, the fair continues through Sunday. Ticket prices and details here.

📬 Got questions about Central Ohio? Email [email protected]. You butter believe we'll find the answers.


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