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[bahy-prod-uh kt] /ˈbaɪˌprɒd əkt/
a secondary or incidental product, as in a process of manufacture.
the result of another action, often unforeseen or unintended.
Origin of by-product
First recorded in 1900-05 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for by-product
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • With regard to leather, this material is, under present conditions, a 'by-product.'

    No Animal Food Rupert H. Wheldon
  • Nor is there any satisfactory application of this by-product as yet evolved.

  • As silver is now obtained largely as a by-product, there is almost no waste.

    Checking the Waste Mary Huston Gregory
  • It is not a by-product, but an essential part of the animal's equipment.

    The Story of the Mind James Mark Baldwin
  • It is prepared commercially as a by-product in the steel-plate mills.

  • You might say that in England fabrics were a by-product of agriculture.


    William H. Dooley
  • She is too young to endure it, sobbed the by-product to her of the sketchy face.

    Iole Robert W. Chambers
British Dictionary definitions for by-product


a secondary or incidental product of a manufacturing process
a side effect
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for by-product

also byproduct; 1857, from by + product.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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by-product in Science
Something produced in the process of making something else. When plants produce carbohydrates by photosynthesis, oxygen is released as a by-product. Asphalt and paraffin are by-products of the process of refining crude oil into gasoline.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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