The emphasis of many developments was increasingly on the ability to control applications in order to better make use of the nutrients in muck and slurry, and record those applications for traceability and future nutrient planning.
The growing trend to engage contractors to spread muck has also led to machinery becoming higher in capacity and increasingly heavy duty to cope with increased workloads and more powerful tractors. READ MORE
Organized by WET News and Water & Wastewater Treatment, the awards celebrate innovation and best practices in the water sector, and are highly prized within the industry.
Dairy and hog producers install the LWR System when they want smart, flexible, on-site nutrient recovery that allows them to expand their herds.
The LWR System holds the industry record for the most installations and is helping producers make valuable nutrient products that are easy to export while recycling clean water that is used to clean sand, irrigate crops, and even water back to the livestock.
"We are always pushing ourselves to consistently deliver leading-edge technologies to our customers while going above and beyond the call of duty," says Director of Operations, J.R. Brooks. "It is truly an honor to be recognized on this short list of companies who are each changing the water treatment landscape in their respective fields."
LWR has created the only proven system on the market that segregates and concentrates manure nutrients while recycling clean water that can be used back on the farm.
Today, over 590,000,000 million gallons of manure can be treated annually through LWR Systems that are currently installed across North America.
Not only are nutrient values maximized, but this method of manure treatment currently results in the potential recovery of over 400 million of gallons of clean, reusable water.
Enough water to fill 639 Olympic sized swimming pools, or the equivalent of the annual water consumption of over 13,000 Americans - and that number rises with every new installation.
"To be recognized among the water industry's elite is a result of our ongoing desire to provide the livestock industry with proven, reliable technology that truly adds value to farming operations. We are excited to showcase our technology on the world stage" adds Brooks.
The event will bring thousands of pork producers, industry professionals and industry experts together for the world's largest pork industry-specific trade show, educational seminars, industry updates and networking opportunities.
The World Pork Expo has been held annually since 1987 and in 2016, the event saw more than 23,000 attendees.
For more information, visit https://www.worldpork.org/
One strategy for dealing with poultry poop is to turn it into biofuel, and now scientists have developed a way to do this by mixing the waste with another environmental scourge, an invasive weed that is affecting agriculture in Africa. They report their approach in ACS' journal Energy & Fuels.
Poultry sludge is sometimes turned into fertilizer, but recent trends in industrialized chicken farming have led to an increase in waste mismanagement and negative environmental impacts, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.
Droppings can contain nutrients, hormones, antibiotics and heavy metals and can wash into the soil and surface water. To deal with this problem, scientists have been working on ways to convert the waste into fuel. But alone, poultry droppings don't transform well into biogas, so it's mixed with plant materials such as switch grass.
Samuel O. Dahunsi, Solomon U. Oranusi and colleagues wanted to see if they could combine the chicken waste with Tithonia diversifolia (Mexican sunflower), which was introduced to Africa as an ornamental plant decades ago and has become a major weed threatening agricultural production on the continent.
The researchers developed a process to pre-treat chicken droppings, and then have anaerobic microbes digest the waste and Mexican sunflowers together. Eight kilograms of poultry waste and sunflowers produced more than 3 kg of biogas — more than enough fuel to drive the reaction and have some leftover for other uses such as powering a generator. Also, the researchers say that the residual solids from the process could be applied as fertilizer or soil conditioner.
The authors acknowledge funding from Landmark University.
The Webinar will take place on Wednesday, May 24, 2017 from 2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern Time.
Industry leaders from Noblehurst Farms Inc., EnviTec Biogas, and DVO, Inc. will review innovative business models for anaerobic digestion (AD) projects and discuss the hub-and-spoke model of hauling manure from several farms to a centralized digester, how to establish successful business arrangements with food waste producers, sustainable production of renewable energy and coproducts using AD and how AD project risks and benefits can be shared among multiple parties.
The webinar will include a question-and-answer session and participants will be encouraged to ask questions. Participation in the webinar is free. To register, visit: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5557285092277361154
In recent years, scientists around the world have made great progress in their attempts to recycle cattle manure, including turning it into natural fertilizer and biogas, but Eindhoven designer, Jalila Essaïdi didn't think they were efficient enough to solve the global manure surplus problem.
So, she started on her very own solution, one that approached animal waste as a valuable material that could be processed into useful products. The results of her work prove that manure really is worth its weight in gold.
Working in her BioArtLab, Essaïdi discovered that cow manure provided both the base for a new, bio-degradable material and the chemicals required to produce it.
She started by separating the waste, with the dry manure used to extract pure cellulose from the grass that cows eat. From the wet manure, she extracted acids used to create cellulose acetate, a natural liquid plastic. This was used to make fibers, which are later turned into fabric or bio-plastics, but it can also be freeze-dried to create an aerogel.
The new material was named Mestic, from mest, the Dutch word for manure. Essaïdi claims that it has the same properties as plastic derived from fossil fuels, but is bio-degradable. Better yet, the degradability can be tweaked in the lab, making it possible to create materials that last for different periods of time depending on their purpose. READ MORE
"Livestock are significant emission contributors," says Dr. Sean McGinn of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, a long-time researcher in the emissions area. "That's quite clear and generally recognized by the agricultural research community."
Fifty to 60 percent of feed nitrogen is lost as ammonia at the feedlot. Eight to 10 percent of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions are from agriculture and 90 percent of the atmospheric ammonia comes from cattle manure. Ammonia in the atmosphere is an economic loss because the nitrogen fertilizer potential of manure is lowered. And it's a health hazard. Ammonia mixes with acid to form fine aerosols, the white haze seen in confined airsheds.
"We know beef feedlots are 'hot spots' of ammonia emissions on the landscape, but we didn't know as much about the dynamics of ammonia emissions from feedlots. For example we didn't have real numbers from actual feedlots on how much is emitted, how much is deposited on nearby soil and how much re-emission occurs when that happens."
That's what McGinn and his colleague Dr. Tom Flesch (University of Alberta) set out to understand. Backed by funding from the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency (ALMA), a two-year project investigated the fate of nitrogen in feedlots, what amount is deposited on land downwind and how much is carried long distances.
The other part of their research involves measuring methane and nitrous oxide, two prominent greenhouse gasses. Methane is produced by cattle due to the anaerobic digestion of feed in the cow's rumen and both nitrous oxide and methane come from stored manure in the pens.
The research produced significant results on several fronts from techniques to measure on a commercial scale, to new information on transfer, deposits and re-emission to nearby lands, to related opportunities for mitigation and management.
New measuring techniques
One major positive outcome was the development of new measuring technology adapted from what has been used successfully for measuring flare emissions in the oil and gas industry.
Using open path lasers that move over the feedlot and calculate concentration and wind characteristics, the system is able to measure emissions regardless of wind direction.
Measuring in real world situations offers some significant advantages to the more standard research protocols of using animals in individual chambers to measure emissions, says McGinn.
This new technique evaluates the feedlot as a whole, which means it can consider whole-unit management aspects which impact emissions. Also, by keeping animals in their natural environment and not interfering with them in any way, the laser approach promises more accurate, commercial scale results.
On a bigger picture level, this means actual feedlot emission numbers can be used in greenhouse gas assessments, an improvement from past practices of using estimates from global sources.
Early results show surprises
One of the surprises learned from this study was the fact that a significant fraction of ammonia was deposited on the land adjacent to the feedlot and, once deposited, how much was reemitted into the atmosphere.
"Our results illustrate the dynamics of reactive ammonia in the vicinity of a beef cattle feedlot," says McGinn. "It confirmed that a large portion of the nitrogen fed as crude protein is volatized from the feedlot's cattle manure. In the local vicinity of a feedlot, both ammonia deposition (14 percent of the emitted ammonia) and reemission occurred. That 14 percent is a large amount considering a typical feedlot emits one to two tonnes of ammonia per day."
There was a change in the soil captured ammonia that decreased with distance from the feedlot (50 percent over 200 m).
Logically it follows that quantifying the local dry ammonia deposition to surrounding fields is required when applying feedlot-based emissions to a large-scale emissions inventory, says McGinn. Failure to do that could mean badly misrepresenting the real situation.
"We need better emissions numbers to anchor effective public policy and fairly represent the feedlot industry in that data pool," says McGinn. "It's important to have research done before policy is set. The U.S. cattle feeding industry already has specific ammonia emission targets in place."
Related scientific paper here: "Ammonia Emission from a Beef Cattle Feedlot and Its Dry Local Deposition and Re-Emission."
March 23, 2017, Emeryville, CA – New Logic Research recently announced the successful commissioning of a VSEP vibrating membrane system to make clean water from digested cow manure.
The VSEP system, located in the Italian Alps region of Wipptal, takes the effluent from an anaerobic digester and transforms it into clean water which can either be reused or safely discharged to the environment. The project was implemented with the expert assistance of O.B. Impianti, New Logic's distribution partner in Northern Italy.
Although cows have a simple diet, the digestive system of ruminant animals makes for complicated wastewater treatment scenarios. VSEP's vibratory shear mechanism, coupled with a filter pack design means, it can create crystal clear permeate from water heavily laden with biological material like cow manure.
"Digesters are great at making green power and reducing contaminant levels in the waste, but in most cases, further treatment of the liquid effluent is still necessary,” said Greg Johnson, CEO of New Logic. “Many have tried to treat digester effluent with standard spiral-wound reverse osmosis membrane systems only to find that it's incredibly difficult, if not impossible. That's why VSEP is a perfect fit for digester effluent treatment: you get the reverse osmosis separation you desire, but deployed in a robust system designed to tackle the world's toughest applications."
The Wipptal project is a cooperative one, taking cow manure from more than three-dozen local farmers. The liquid manure is transported to the treatment facility where more than 60 percent of it is transformed into clean water, while the remainder is turned into concentrated organic fertilizer. The only pretreatment between the digester and the VSEP is a 100-micron screening device to remove large particles from the feed material.
O.B. Impianti and New Logic are already building on the success of the Wipptal installation – they are currently working on two additional installations on the continent, where EU funding is frequently available for such projects.
March 8, 2017, Los Angeles, CA – OriginClear Inc., a provider of water treatment solutions, recently announced its entry into the agricultural wastewater treatment market.
Spanish farming equipment manufacturing company, Montajes Longares, is launching a spinoff to commercialize its patented Depuporc pig manure slurry cleanup system, and has licensed OriginClear's Electro Water Separation (EWS) to help clarify and sanitize the slurry for water reuse and fertilizer applications.
There are more than 85,000 farms in Spain breeding more than 26 million pigs at any one time, making the country the largest pig producer in Europe, and third in the world after China and the U.S. EU regulations are tightening around nitrates discharge, creating increasing pressure on animal farmers to treat their effluents.
"For some time, we've been interested in the agricultural waste water treatment market," said Jean-Louis "JL" Kindler, president of OriginClear's technology division. "Our technology is well-suited to extracting organic contaminants and sanitizing agricultural waste water, and pig manure slurry is a great first application in this large and growing market. We're excited to have a partner who is licensing our technology into their patented system to solve agricultural water treatment challenges."
"We expect to use OriginClear's EWS to significantly reduce the need for chemicals such as coagulants and flocculants, while reducing equipment cost and footprint, and operating expense," said Francisco Longares Valero, CEO and co-founder of Depuporc S.L. "We plan to supply agricultural operators and service companies with mobile treatment units having a capacity of seven metric tons of water per hour, or more than 50,000 gallons per day, and fixed onsite plants able to treat as much as 10 million gallons, per year."
As part of its licensing commitment, Depuporc has acquired an OriginClear laboratory-scale unit to help its engineering team design and build a pilot system for immediate deployment at the site of a prospective client. With full support from its parent company, Depuporc has all the necessary resources for design, engineering, manufacturing, as well as commissioning and maintenance.
The Depuporc system is an integrated solution for livestock waste treatment that processes animal waste through various phases of filtering and separation, providing a source of recycled water for farm cleaning and irrigation. Depuporc S.L. plans to have the first pilot in operation before summer 2017.
March 7, 2017 – Rotterdam-based architects are coming up with plans to transform the city through the construction of a floating dairy farm, which is expected to commence operation later this year.
The Floating Farm project team is led by Peter van Wingerden, Carel de Vries and Johan Bosman of property development company Beladon who see it as a way of bringing food production very close to the consumer when there is limited available space on land to do so. The designers aim to bring people into closer contact with the natural value of agriculture and horticulture, livestock farming and a healthy diet. READ MORE
In Europe, where intensive livestock production is common in countries like the Netherlands, Spain and Germany, concern has been raised about its environmental consequences, including runoff of excessively applied nitrate and phosphate contamination of surface water and soil.
Manure produced by intensive livestock production can lead to atmospheric emissions of ammonia, nitrous oxide, and mono-nitrogen oxides, like NO and NO2, especially when directly spread on cropland. In the 1990s, EU council, parliament and commission met to discuss possible solutions. Those discussions led to the implementation of new, more stringent regulations, including the nitrates directive – better known as 91/676/EEC – which limits application rates of livestock manure to arable land. These restrictions led farmers to look for alternatives, such as composting and biogas production.
In the Netherlands, where agricultural production is especially intensive, the issue prompted poultry farmers into action. Together, they came up with a unique solution – convert poultry manure into electricity.
“We were producing too much manure in comparison to the arable land we had,” explained Wil van der Heijden MBA, director at Duurzame Energieproductie Pluimveehouderij (DEP), a co-operative of more than 600 Dutch poultry farmers who supply the Moerdijk-based power plant with poultry manure for fuel. “We also had a problem with too much phosphate in the soil and nitrogen in the water.”
Van der Heijden is right; Dutch farmers do produce more manure than the arable land around them can use. The issue doesn’t just affect poultry farmers either. In fact, Dutch dairy farmers were recently told they have to reduce herd size in order to comply with EU phosphate regulations.
Overproduction of manure has also been a problem for Dutch poultry farmers. Each year, poultry in the Netherlands produce approximately 1.3 million tonnes of litter. Of that, 650,000 tonnes is exported to Germany, Belgium and France for use as fertilizer – a job that is facilitated by traders who make money by taking manure out of the hands of farmers and putting it into the hands of other farmers. For decades, Dutch poultry farmers were at the mercy of these traders, who charged €30-35 ($33.34 to $38.90 US) per tonne for removal. For a 100,000-bird broiler farm, this amounted to €30,000 to €35,000 ($33,350 to $38,900 US) each year, a hefty fee that left many struggling.
In 1998, Dutch poultry farmers met to discuss how they could separate themselves from the traders, as well as regulations and borders. Their solution was to join forces with a power plant and turn poultry manure into electricity. In 1999, the farmers formed DEP. The farmer members supply litter to BMC Moerdijk, a company that produces electricity using a fluidized bed combustor.
“They wanted to be independent from traders, from the weather, from the borders, and the regulations in Germany and France,” said Van der Heijden. “They learned that poultry manure could be used as fuel for electricity production and they found that there was some experience in the U.K., although very small scale.”
From conceptualization to the plant’s opening, it took 10 years for their plan to become a reality. First, explained DEP co-operative director Wil van der Heijden, they had to find the right location, which turned out to be Moerdijk, a town in the south of the Netherlands in the province of North Brabant. Then they had to apply for permissions and subsidies, look for partners and financing, and finally draw up fair contracts, which Van der Heijden said were crucial for reducing risk. Construction on BMC Moerdijk began in 2006 and concluded in 2008.
Financing for the plant came from the bank, which fronted 80 percent of the overall cost. The rest came from BMC Moerdijk’s shareholders. Delta, the company that buys the electricity BMC produces, owns 50 percent of the shares. The farmers association ZLTO and DEP own the remaining shares at 33 and 17 percent respectively.
While Dutch poultry farmers were once paying €30 to €35 ($33.34 to $38.90 US) per tonne to traders for removal, in 2008, when BMC started production, farmers who joined the co-operative were contracted at €20 ($22 US) per tonne. Immediately, the traders dropped their rate to match that of BMC’s, said Van der Heijden.
“We told farmers that we could process their manure for 10 years for between €15 and €20 ($16.65 US to $22 US) [per tonne],” he said. “That’s why they signed the contract. But immediately after that, the traders dropped the price to €20 ($22 US) – and then even dropped to €10 ($11 US) two years later. You can imagine that all the members in 2012 were very angry.”
Today, the farmers are happy. They now pay just €11.50 to €12 ($12.75 US to $13.30 US) per tonne.
“We dropped the price in 2013,”explained Van der Heijden. “We had to drop the price from €20 to €11 ($22 US to $12.20 US) or €12 ($12.75 US) because they were so pissed off… because they all wanted to move. And if there is no fuel, there is no possibility to produce electricity. So, we had to join them.”
Today, BMC processes some 430,000 tonnes of poultry manure – one-third of the total amount of poultry manure produced in the Netherlands – each year. Everyday, 60 trucks supply approximately 2,000 tonnes to the power plant. Using that manure, BMC generates 285,000 MWh of power each year. The plant uses a small amount of the electricity it produces and supplies approximately 245,000 MWh to the electrical grid. The electricity the company produces is enough to meet the needs of 80 percent of all Dutch poultry farmers for one year.
BMC Moerdijk doesn’t just produce electricity, though. It also produces ash, which is a by-product of the incineration process. The ash contains highly valuable minerals, like potassium and phosphorus. It is sold to customers in the agricultural and horticultural sectors outside of the Netherlands. Those customers use the ash, sold under the name PeaKsoil, as a fertilizer to improve soil.
In its first years of operation, BMC Moerdijk learned several important lessons. First, not all types of manure are suitable for processing.
“We thought poultry manure is poultry manure, but it isn’t,” said Van der Heijden. “There are a lot of differences between manure from layer hens and broilers, and turkeys and breeders.”
Storage was also an issue. Without storage the company sometimes had to work 15 days off and 15 days on. Today, BMC can store 10,000 to 12,000 tonnes.
“It is very important to have stable supply and demand,” explained Van der Heijden. “We also learned that the cooperative structure was useful for this type of corporation. We also learned that fixed contracts are very crucial because otherwise halfway all of the members would have left the co-operative. The fixed contracts were very useful for us and the bank to reduce the risks.”
Electricity from poultry manure is a cleaner alternative to direct land application, explained Gerd-Jan de Leeuw, MSc, at a recent visit to the plant. De Leeuw is responsible for the fuel and PeaKsoil at BMC Moerdijk. Electricity production from poultry manure saves on emissions from fossil fuel combustion. Spreading poultry manure on the land also causes larger emissions of NH3, N2O and NOx than combustion does. Finally, the ash that’s recovered has a lower mass and volume than the manure, making it more suitable for export to regions that require phosphate.
“All of the minerals, except nitrogen and organic matter, are in the PeaKsoil, so in the ash,” said De Leeuw. “We can sell it as a fertilizer. We sell it to countries where they have a phosphate demand.”
Those countries include Belgium, France and the United Kingdom where it has been especially useful in corn and wheat crops.
All in all, BMC has proven itself as a sustainable and reliable electricity producer. Dutch poultry farmers, as a result of their cooperation with BMC, have not only complied with their obligation to process poultry manure, but also helped reduce the Dutch phosphorus surplus by approximately 8,000,000 kg P2O5 each year. The company also contributes to the Netherlands’ goal of lowering CO2 emissions and using 14 percent renewable energy by 2020. Finally, BMC has helped reduce poultry farmers’ NH3 emissions by 25 percent since 2008.
This summer, BMC was in heavy discussion with DEP, as the 10-year contracts with its members are up at the end of 2017. The discussions were a great success with 87 percent of poultry farmer members renewing their contracts, which will start January 1, 2018. Those contracts expire at the end of 2029. On average, members will pay €6.50 ($7.20 US) per tonne, an amazing reduction since 2007.
A 16-year-old farm boy from Wisconsin; a middle-aged Michigan dairy farmer; a 56-year-old pig farmer and his 18-year-old hired hand, both from Quebec, Canada; two brothers from a dairying family in South Dakota; a 29-year-old cattle farmer, also from Wisconsin – 2016 was a dangerous year for those managing and handling manure.
According to reports, all of the people from this sampling of 2016 manure gas fatalities were going about their normal day-to-day work – spreading manure, making repairs, agitating a lagoon, servicing equipment. These were activities they’d probably done dozens of times before without incident.
“Complacency kills,” stated Robb Meinen, a senior Extension associate with Penn State University, in a recent news release on manure gas safety. “It is not unusual in fatality situations to hear things like: ‘He’s gone in there to unclog that pump a hundred times.’”
It’s easy to take safety for granted. After all, we live in an increasingly bubble-wrapped world where even silica packets in shoeboxes warn us not to eat them. And while most farmers understand the dangers of entering enclosed spaces, such as pump pits and under-barn manure storages, some wouldn’t expect to find the same gas hazards working in an open-air area. But atmospheric conditions can play an important role in manure gas distribution.
That’s what investigators believe occurred to Mike Biadasz, an Amherst, Wisc., area farmer who died of acute exposure to hydrogen sulfide gas while agitating an outdoor manure lagoon on his family’s farm. A perfect storm of weather conditions – clear skies, no wind, heavy fog – caused the gases released during manure agitation to pool low to the ground, leading to the 29-year-old’s death.
In light of the tragedy, University of Wisconsin Extension held a manure gas safety webinar in early September to raise awareness of manure gases and update farmers about resources available to them. A recording of the presentation is available at Extension’s Agricultural Safety and Health website. During the 70-minute event, experts outlined the basics of manure gases, safety and monitoring recommendations, plus solutions to keep workers and livestock safe.
University of Wisconsin Extension is continuing its educational outreach by offering a workshop aimed at developing safety plans for manure storage and handling systems. It’s scheduled for Feb. 21 in Green Bay, Wisc., just prior to the 2017 Midwest Manure Summit.
While farming accidents are devastating to all involved, it’s important to learn from them.
The Biadasz family recognizes this. As a result of their son and brother’s death, they have opened a memorial fund in Mike’s name. The Mike Biadasz Farm Safety and Education Memorial Fund hopes to raise awareness and educate people about farm safety, including the dangers of manure gas. The fund, administered through the Community Foundation of Central Wisconsin, has received more than $40,000 in donations.
Please keep safety in mind as we head into 2017. Be careful out there.
October 5, 2016, Toyota City, Japan – Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) and contact lens manufacturer Menicon Co., Ltd. (Menicon) have jointly developed a new liquid livestock manure composting product that will join the resQ45 series of TMC-Menicon jointly developed manure composting systems.
The product, called the New-Tokubetsu-Kyuko Liquid (new special express liquid enzyme), will be sold by Toyota Roof Garden Co., Ltd. It will be distributed through Toyota Tsusho Corporation's (Toyota Tsucho) livestock feed sales channels.
In Japan, where around 80 million tons of livestock manure are generated annually, concerns about the adverse impact of manure on the environment, including its offensive odor, water pollution, and greenhouse-gas generation, have created widespread awareness for the need to find ways to properly process, and to effectively utilize manure. In January 2013, Toyota and Menicon launched a jointly developed powder livestock manure composting product called the New-Tokubetsu-Kyuko, which had significantly shortened the composting period from around one month to around two weeks, while substantially reducing the generation of malodorous ammonia gas by between 50 and 90 percent (in the case of poultry waste). However, since the dispersion of powder composting agents is both a time- and labor-intensive process for large farms with major composting requirements, TMC and Menicon recognized the need to develop a liquid product that can be dispersed more easily by existing liquid dispensers.
Using these liquid dispensers, the newly developed New-Tokubetsu-Kyuko Liquid can be dispersed in a manner that is more reliable and uniform as compared to powder. This helps to improve dispersion efficiency and helps to facilitate the creation of better quality compost. As a result, TMC and Menicon believe this new product will help to reduce onerous work on livestock farms, while also providing positive environmental benefits at the same time. Furthermore, since a 100 grams bottle of the new liquid product is able to substitute for an 8 kg bag of powder, this development also helps to significantly reduce the space needed for storage.
June 2016 marked the tenth anniversary of the launch of the resQ45 series of manure composting systems, which were developed to help improve the livestock manure composting process. In addition to New-Tokubetsu-Kyuko Liquid, other main products in this series include the Buta resQ for pig manure and the Moo resQ for cows. Total sales of the resQ45 product lineup reached 200,000 bags in April, and annual sales are forecasted to hit 50,000 bags this year.
The North American Manure Expo is a travelling show that combines three attractions into one event, consisting of:
- Industry trade show
- Manure technology demonstrations and tours
- Educational sessions and events
"The North American Manure Expo will also provide an opportunity to showcase our state's feeding industry and its ongoing commitment to environmental stewardship," said David Kringen, SDSU Extension Water Resources Field Specialist.
History of the North American Manure Expo
In early 2001, the University of Wisconsin was approached by a number of custom manure applicators in their region requesting a show that would provide side-by-side comparisons of agitation and application equipment to help determine what best fit their individual needs.
From this request came the first Manure Expo, which was held near Prairie Du Sac, WI, in August 2001. The first event proved to be very successful and additional shows were requested for 2003.
Growing attendance meant that expansion was needed and it was decided at that time to take the show on the road as well. The expo has grown to be an annual event and has been hosted by Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Iowa, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Ontario, Canada and, in 2018, South Dakota!
The North American Manure Expo can expect to bring together a number of different industry and agency personnel including, but are not limited to:
- Livestock producers in the dairy, beef, pork, and poultry industries;
- Custom manure handlers, applicators, and brokers;
- Crop consultants and nutrient management specialists;
- Agricultural support industry; and
- Extension and agency personnel.
SDSU Extension is currently evaluating a number of site locations in southeast South Dakota along the Interstate-29 corridor that can accommodate a potential audience of 1,000+ attendees over a two-day event.
"The chosen site will have room for exhibitors, educational sessions, and machinery demonstrations," Kringen explained. "A site near Sioux Falls would provide an ideal central location for attendees travelling from neighboring states, have airport access, and be in close proximity to the South Dakota feeding industry."
SDSU Extension has also taken a regional approach in the planning and development of the 2018 Expo by inviting the cooperation of the other members of the I-29 Consortium of Universities from the neighboring states of North Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, and Minnesota.
"We feel this multi-state approach will give participants the best possible experience when attending the event," Kringen said.
South Dakota's initial planning committee includes:
- Erin Cortus, Associate Professor & SDSU Extension Environmental Quality Engineer
- David Kringen, SDSU Extension Water Resources Field Specialist
- John Lentz, Resource Conservationist, South Dakota NRCS Nutrient Management Team
While the input from neighboring universities will be invaluable, Kringen said support from the South Dakota livestock industry, producer organizations, custom manure applicators, and others will be vital in order for the event to be successful.
"SDSU Extension looks forward to working with our industry partners over the next two years to bring about a memorable expo in 2018," he said.
July 27, 2016 – Clothing made from cow manure? Don't pooh-pooh the idea just yet.
After all, dung is serious business, particularly in the Netherlands, where a booming dairy industry has already outstripped the so-called "phosphate ceiling" of 172.9 million kilograms per year. READ MORE
May 24, 2016, Chilton, WI – Both installation and commissioning are complete on a DVO, Inc. anaerobic digester at Austasia Modern Dairy Farm in Xianhe, located in Shandong Province, China.
This is DVO’s first installation in China, and the country’s first modern, operational anaerobic digester.
The digester currently processes the manure from approximately 5,600 milking cows at Austasia Farms. Biogas, one of the many valuable byproducts of the anaerobic digestion process, powers a boiler, which creates hot water. The hot water is utilized to heat the digester and various on-site facilities at Austasia Farms. Future plans for the biogas include creating renewable natural gas (RNG) or producing renewable electricity.
“This project is truly revolutionary in China,” said Steve Dvorak, owner and founder of DVO, Inc. “As dairy operations are built, the Chinese government is stressing the importance of including anaerobic digesters in the dairy operations’ design. Not only do digesters help China meet its greenhouse gas emissions reduction target, they complement the country’s commitment to reduce agricultural pollution.”
"The Austasia team is pleased with the performance of our system which is producing considerably more biogas than other digesters in the country," said Quanbao Zhao, China representative and researcher for DVO, Inc. "They say it is a simpler system to operate, requiring less labor than other digesters."
May 20, 2016, Washington, DC – Emissions from farms outweigh all other human sources of fine-particulate air pollution in much of the United States, Europe, Russia and China, according to new research.
The culprit: fumes from nitrogen-rich fertilizers and animal waste combine in the air with combustion emissions to form solid particles, which constitute a major source of disease and death, according to the new study.
The good news is if combustion emissions decline in coming decades, as most projections say, fine-particle pollution will go down even if fertilizer use doubles as expected, according to the new study published in Geophysical Research Letters, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.
Agricultural air pollution comes mainly in the form of ammonia, which enters the air as a gas from heavily fertilized fields and livestock waste. It then combines with pollutants from combustion – mainly nitrogen oxides and sulfates from vehicles, power plants and industrial processes – to create tiny solid particles, or aerosols, no more than 2.5 micrometers across, about 1/30 the width of a human hair.
Aerosols can penetrate deep into lungs, causing heart or pulmonary disease. A 2015 study in the journal Nature estimates they cause at least 3.3 million deaths each year globally, and a recent study in Geophysical Research Letters found they cause over 500,000 annual deaths in India alone.
Many regional studies, especially in the United States, have shown agricultural pollution to be a prime source of fine-particulate precursors, but the new study is one of the first to look at the phenomenon worldwide and to project future trends. The study's results show more than half the aerosols in much of the eastern and central United States come from farming.
"This is not against fertilizer – there are many places, including Africa, that need more of it," said Susanne Bauer, an atmospheric scientist at Columbia University's Center for Climate Systems Research and NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York and lead author of the study. "We expect population to go up, and to produce more food, we will need more fertilizer."
The fact that agricultural emissions must combine with other pollutants to make aerosols is good news, according to Bauer. Most projections say tighter regulations, cleaner sources of electricity and higher-mileage vehicles will cut industrial emissions enough by the end of this century that farm emissions will be starved of the other ingredients necessary to create aerosols, she said.
"You might expect air quality would decline if ammonia emissions go up, but this shows it won't happen, provided the emissions from combustion go down," said Fabien Paulot, an atmospheric chemist with Princeton University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, who was not involved in the study.
That means pollutants other than ammonia should probably be targeted for abatement, he said.
Johannes Lelieveld, lead author of the 2015 Nature study, disagreed.
"One should be cautious about suggesting that food production could be increased" without increasing pollution, because that "critically depends" on the assumption that societies will successfully curb industrial emissions, he said. Lelieveld pointed out that even with recent reductions in industrial pollution, most nations, including the United States, still have large areas that exceed the World Meteorological Organization's recommended maximum of particulate matter.
If future industrial emissions do go down, much farm-produced ammonia will end up in Earth's troposphere, roughly two to 10 kilometers (one to six miles) above the surface, Bauer said. There, lightning and other natural processes may also help create fine particulates, but most of these particles would be trapped by raindrops and harmlessly removed from the atmosphere, she said.
April 25, 2016, Kenosha, WI – Centrisys Corporation, a manufacturer of dewatering and thickening centrifuges, recently announced that it has been named a winner of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Nutrient Recycling Challenge.
The competition challenges companies worldwide to develop technological advancements that recycle nutrients from livestock manure more effectively.
Livestock producers manage over one billion tons of animal manure annually in the United States. Recognizing the need to accelerate products that address more effective management of this issue, the EPA created the Nutrient Recycling Challenge. Out of 75 submissions from companies worldwide, 34 were chosen to continue on to the design phase, and the Centrisys team was ranked as one of the top four winners.
Centrisys’ winning paper was titled Removal of Dissolved Nitrogen and Phosphorus from Livestock Manure by Air Stripping, and was developed in collaboration with CNP-Technology Water and Biosolids Corp. To maximize nutrient removal from the liquid fraction of manure, the team proposed treating anaerobically digested swine manure with AirPrex struvite precipitators before being dewatered with a decanter centrifuge. AirPrex is a CNP technology that utilizes CO2 stripping to convert the dissolved fraction of phosphorus and nitrogen into solid fertilizer struvite.
“Solid separation is the primary means of managing nutrients in livestock manure and Centrisys has been setting a standard for effective solid separation,” said Hiroko Yoshida, senior research and development engineer and project leader. “We’re proud to apply more than a decade of engineering knowledge in solids separation to manure management – helping livestock producers by developing reliable nutrient management solutions.”
Since 1987, Centrisys has been a manufacturer of decanter centrifuges, dewatering systems and process technologies for dewatering and water/solids separation in municipal, agriculture, and industrial applications. Centrisys introduced the industry’s first manure waste specific application for decanter centrifuges in the mid-2000s after extensive application and testing in dairy operations throughout the U.S.
Back in mid-November, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plus 20 business and association partners made an exciting announcement. They launched a challenge – the Nutrient Recycling Challenge – a competition aimed at developing affordable technologies that can recycle nutrients from livestock manure.
The main idea behind the challenge is to encourage participants to develop affordable and useable technologies that can extract nutrients from manure and generate products that can benefit the environment and be sold or used by farmers.
“Scientists and engineers are already building technologies that can recover nutrients but further development is needed to make them more effective and affordable,” stated Gina McCarthy, EPA administrator, when the challenge was launched. “The Nutrient Recycling Challenge will harness the power of competition to find solutions that are a win/win for farmers, the environment, and the economy.”
The competition has been organized into four stages. Phase I (January 15, 2016) calls for concept papers outlining the idea behind the technology. Phase II (Spring 2016) will involve designing the technology. Phase III (Summer 2016) involves the development of prototypes and proof of concept. Final submissions are due by Fall 2016 with an awards ceremony expected January 2017. Phase IV (Spring 2017) will involve placing the final participants’ technologies on pilot farm operations.
Already, the first phase of the multi-year competition has been completed. During Phase I, as much as $20,000 in cash prizes will be split between up to four winning concepts. As well, according to the challenge website (nutrientrecyclingchallenge.org), promising applicants will also be invited to an exclusive two-day partnering and investor summit in Washington, DC, being held in March 2016. They can also gain entry into further phases of the challenge, which will include potential awards such as further funding, incubation support, connection to investors, media and publicity plus the opportunity to have the technology demonstrated on an operational farm.
Since the project was launched, discussion about the challenge has been quiet with the event website’s discussion area posting links to articles announcing the competition. As of the end of December 2016, only seven people were following the challenge on its website.
Even many of the event partners have been mute about the competition, except for Smithfield Foods, which released a press release promoting its involvement in the challenge.
“Our goal in partnering in this competition is to encourage innovation and identify additional opportunities for continuous improvement in management of livestock manure,” said Kraig Westerbeek, vice president of environmental compliance and support operations of Smithfield’s hog production division.
I look forward to the announcement of Phase I winners in March and will be following the competition through all of its phases. Be sure to check back with Manure Manager for updates.
December 7, 2015, Taipei – Taiwan's Council of Agriculture (COA) has given financial support to three large-scale hog farms in Taiwan to turn pig waste into electricity and step up the use of alternative energy sources.
According to Wang Chung-shu, deputy director of the COA's Department of Animal Industry, the agency has cooperated with the Bureau of Energy under the Ministry of Economic Affairs to support hog operators in tapping into waste-to-energy technology. READ MORE
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