Frontier Former Editor

May 8, 2008

A great way to combine funeral service and home economics programs at vocational schools!

Filed under: biotech, cooking, humor — Tags: , , , , , , — Frontier Former Editor @ 10:48 pm

Now, here’s a way to use those old pressure cookers and leftover Drano between canning seasons!

New Morgue Science: Dissolving Bodies With


Process Includes Heat, Pressure in Steel Containers



CONCORD, N.H. — Since they first walked the planet, humans have either buried or burned their dead. Now a new option is generating interest — dissolving bodies in lye and flushing the brownish, syrupy residue down the drain. The process is called alkaline hydrolysis and was developed in this country 16 years ago to get rid of animal carcasses. It uses lye, 300-degree heat and 60 pounds of pressure per square inch to destroy bodies in big stainless-steel cylinders that are similar to pressure cookers. 

No funeral homes in the U.S. — or anywhere else in the world, as far as the equipment manufacturer knows — offer it. In fact, only two U.S. medical centers use it on human bodies, and only on cadavers donated for research. 

But because of its environmental advantages, some in the funeral industry say it could someday rival burial and cremation. ” It’s not often that a truly game-changing technology comes along in the funeral service,” the newsletter Funeral Service Insider said in September. But “we might have gotten a hold of one.”

more here

Frankly, any technology that keeps a funeral home from selling you a septic tank without holes to preserve your corpse and turning usable land into a minefield of concrete and metal boxes is a game changing technology.

Knowing the funeral industry lobby, though, there’ll probably be laws in most states requiring families to purchase Elvis souvenir decanters to house their new liquid assets.

On the bright side, this stuff could be marketed as diet pancake syrup or drambuie. I’ve even got a label: Soylent Brown.



  1. Great idea, but I wonder what it would really be called. Somehow I don’t see Soylent Brown catching on. 🙂

    Comment by azahar — May 9, 2008 @ 2:55 am

  2. Well, a hand cleaner marketed here already took the name ‘Goop’ . . .

    Comment by Frontier Former Editor — May 9, 2008 @ 7:17 am

  3. Eeew!

    No way. Grandma does not go on pancakes and that is final.

    Comment by max — May 10, 2008 @ 12:08 am

  4. But she goes great on waffles . . .

    Comment by Frontier Former Editor — May 10, 2008 @ 6:28 am

  5. The imagery this creates in my overactive imagination is a tad bit disturbing.

    Comment by mrsvierkant — May 10, 2008 @ 7:54 am

  6. Just a tad bit? We’ll have to do better then . . .

    Comment by Former Frontier Editor — May 10, 2008 @ 7:15 pm

  7. […] **pps : no one who is squeamish look but anita will like this anita have you seen this? […]

    Pingback by amptp rides again « celluloid blonde — May 11, 2008 @ 4:18 am

  8. Fine. The industry of death has been getting weirder and weirder over time, and we are too too obsessed with corpses. What happens to me after I kick is totally up to my children, and they know I don’t want them to obsess over earthly remains.

    My husband is buried in a cemetery with his father and paternal grandparents. There are empty plots for my MIL and me. MIL worries all the time about dead bodies and funerals and all as if it matters. Just the other day, she asked me if it would be OK if she reburied my husband (and my FIL) in the cemetery with HER siblings and parents…. so SHE could be buried with her family. Fine. Fine. I don’t care, but…

    I came real close to saying “Fine. Then after you kick the bucket, I’ll just have him dug up again and taken to (my hometown).”

    I didn’t say it, though. She’d write my kids out of the will just for spite. And she’d probably never sleep again.

    Comment by Miss Cellania — May 11, 2008 @ 5:46 pm

  9. Whatever public health benefits that government regulation may have regarding disposition of corpses has been far eclipsed by the con game that the funeral industry has perpetrated by lobbying for things like vaults and embalming.

    Personally, I would hope my family spend as little as possible on disposing of my corpse – mainly carfare to the landfill or incinerator.

    Comment by Frontier Former Editor — May 11, 2008 @ 9:52 pm

  10. Buon Giorno, Senor FFE

    Many of the Folk in these parts are descended from Ancestors whose Chieftains would have aspired :

    1. to accumulate lorry-loads of Queen Anne Furniture & Gold/Silver bars in a lifetime of hedonistic self-indulgence and looting of Monasteries (Democrats would call it “redistribution of wealth in the interests of equality and a Fairr Society”)

    and upon becoming LATE (a Botswanan word meaning “Mort” in Froggisch)

    2. to take it with them, as they floated on a burning Long-Boat into the West in the direction of Avalon (in English = New York)

    Cruella de Blair’s husband has chosen the less combustible alternative of accumulating an increasing number of mansion-houses

    No wonder the Brits no longer have an Empire

    Yr obedt servant etc

    G E

    Comment by G Eagle Esq — May 12, 2008 @ 3:36 am

  11. I don’t care what happens to me after they remove relevant body parts for recycling in other humans.

    but something makes me balk at being flushed down a drain

    Comment by nursemyra — May 13, 2008 @ 5:42 pm

  12. Anybody who thinks this is new has never read The Thin Man.

    Comment by raincoaster — May 14, 2008 @ 12:46 am

  13. Maybe it is just me but with the current political climate, I just get really creeped out by new and improved ways to dispose of bodies that would work pretty well en masse.

    Comment by max — May 14, 2008 @ 3:48 am

  14. Well. There goes my dream of a Viking funeral.

    Comment by Stiletto — May 16, 2008 @ 12:16 pm

  15. My corpse will have to be professionally disassembled, possibly by someone from Westinghouse or Sony, and placed carefully in a series of clay jars. I’m thinking of an amusing Russian-doll motif.

    When the time is right I intend to take the staff of the nursing home with me as my personal slaves in paradise.

    The trouble may be getting them to build the pyramid without them catching on.

    Comment by Metro — June 10, 2008 @ 3:07 pm

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