Fueled by French fries

Have you seen our Big Wheel van driving around town recently? Did you know that it is fueled with biodiesel made from our used fryer oil!?

At Big Wheel Burger we pride ourselves on preparing delicious food while simultaneously having a positive impact on the environment and supporting our community. With the shift towards a green economy and our desire to further reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, we wanted to find out how we could play a role in the circular economy.

The circular economy is something that has been a hot topic in today’s current climate crisis culture as a necessary shift to reduce carbon emissions, operate within planetary boundaries and to create a thriving economy. The Ellen Macarthur Foundation, a leader in accelerating the circular economy globally, explains that the “circular economy is based on the principles of designing out waste and pollution, keeping products and materials in use, and regenerating natural systems”.

Image source: The Final Straw



On a local level, Project Zero, run by The Synergy Foundation envisions a circular economy for Vancouver Island where materials are shared, products are made and repaired locally, and waste is upcycled into new products.

The oil from our fryers is collected, cleaned and converted into biodiesel by Cowichan Biodiesel. Their biodiesel can be used by any diesel engine (no conversion required!). So, next time you are driving through Cowichan, stop by their Green & Go gas station and fuel up to do your part for the planet.

We use biodiesel in our Big Wheel cargo van that runs deliveries all over Victoria as  operations manager Jason Ducklow explains in the Shaw Spotlight video “we are using canola oil for its entire lifespan and then extending it”.

Our friends in the Cowichan Valley have helped us to close this loop and reduce our carbon footprint. This has enabled us to shift from the traditional linear economy of take-make-waste a model where our oil is produced, used for its entire life cycle, upcycled into biodiesel.

The Cowichan company is now expanding to make more products out of used cooking oil, including form-release agents for construction. Check out their new company, Ergo, to learn more about what they are doing and where you can purchase their biodiesel.

Keep an eye out for the Big Wheel van around town and feel good knowing that the French fries you are enjoying with your burger are helping to support the circular economy here on Vancouver Island.