Composting with Waste (Manure)

Forum: Waste (Manure) Processing and Handling: Composting

Published on: 08/30/2012
Source : Paul Walker, Principal Investigator (Illinois State University)
Several studies exploring composting as an alternative to direct land application of swine manure were conducted. The primary objective of these studies was to develop composting procedures for feasible use on Illinois farms. Summary Composting manure is a practical, economical, environmentally safe way for pork producers to co-exist with increasing urban sprawl. Composting is an age-old practi...
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Takero Sato Takero Sato
Marketing Assistant
August 30, 2012

What is the best economic efficient way to collect the manure and compost it? should I use a manure separator before and collect liquids to an aeration lagoon and then to add the sludge into the composting process? Should I cover first lagoon with plastic and burn the NH3 emissions with a flare?

Noni Noni
September 5, 2012

Composting is a great way to enhance poor soils around the farm. But it does take time to make. Compost can be made using animal manures and straw, kept moist and turned daily. Dont want the heap to get too hot , otherwise the micro organisms that are at present doing the work to break down the raw materials will die. The heap will take around 6 weeks to mature and can then be used.

Most organic materials will break down but you have to apply some of your time to get it there. A little moisture from the hose and a good place where there is plenty of airation so that the heap does not over heat. 70 degrees F I think is around what it should be

Manure from the farm can be collected with a front end loader if loading out of sheds or "Eco Shelters" and put into heaps and kept moist and turned until it is a good friable material.

If you are using a pond then surely collecting the Methane gas by covering the pond and using it around the farm might be a good idea for heating, vehicles etc.

Using the manure diluted as a "tea" to spread on to pasture or your cropping program also Makes a great fertilizer

Zhao Xinhong Zhao Xinhong
Specialist in Animal Nutrition
September 12, 2012
I much appreciate Noni's speaking on composting of feces, but I am wondering it is neccesary to add some micro product for stimulating such fermentation?
Noni Noni
September 12, 2012
You dont add the microorganism they just seem to be there as the heap ferments. bit like bread making but you have to add yeast to get your result......the bread.
Fernando Escribano Fernando Escribano
Animal Nutritionist. Ag. Engineer.
November 12, 2012

Thanks very much for the very interesting article on composting. Maybe you could help me with one question:
What is the effect of composting manure from different sources (pig slurry, poultry litter on wood shavings, beef cattle or dairy on straw) when animal have been fed with 2% of clays like: sepiolite, bentonite, attapulgite, Kaolin...?.
Can we add the clay at the beginig of composting or at the end of composting to improve water and nutrient retention (N, P, K)?


Tony Mcdonald Tony Mcdonald
November 12, 2012

I compost all our pig manure. I use two three box systems and the compost is produced in 21 days. I brew a probiotic which is added to the pigs drinking water at 1 in 1000 parts. This all but eliminates any smell from the pigs excretions, adds greatly to their health and improves the feed performance. I use the same probiotic at 1 in 20 and spray the compost heaps with it.
I also ferment some finished composts with some added rice bran and sometimes algae and further probiotic to boost the nitrogen levels if needed. Adding lime and dolomite, rock phosphate and a decent potassium source and the result I can pellitise as 100% organic bio-active fertiliser.

Lambert R Monzon Lambert R Monzon
day trader
December 2, 2012

I am interested in doing a hobby of farming, and raising livestocks like: cows, horses, hogs sheeps ,goats, & kennels. I would like to make an organic fertilizers from these animals for my garden. I am glad we have a nice person like you who are able to share your knowledge to someone like me. I do appreciate your help guys.
Thanks a million

Moises Zubiaur Moises Zubiaur
General Manager
January 14, 2013

We have developed 2 ecofriendly products to treat the pig manure. These 2 products will save you time, money and will get smell free fertilizer in return.
You mix 1000 gallons of manure with 2 gallons of our product and in less than 24 hours you will get:
1- Smell free manure
2- Liquid fertilizer
3- Solid fertilizer

Stop digging lagoons to dry manure and wait for months.
Recycle manure and make profit.
Thank you,
Moises Zubiaur

Bwalya Lombe Musonda Bwalya Lombe Musonda
January 16, 2013

The article on Composting pig manure is interesting. But, can I ask another question on pig manure? What if I want to just use pig and cattle dung as manure? How can i sterilise it cheaply? How can I make sure that I kill the pathogens and weeds (in cow dung) cheaply on the farm?


Tony Mcdonald Tony Mcdonald
June 2, 2013
Cattle manure will contain weed seeds which can be killed off by composting them thermophylically. I would suggest you need to pasteurise it rather than sterilise. This you can do now by steaming it as you would a substrate for growing mushrooms. Or you could put the manure in a sack and then drop that into a drum of hot water. Hold that at over 70C for long enough to heat all the way through. The manure should still contain some useful microbes. The water will be useful liquid fertiliser.
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Jon Bergstrom
Jon Bergstrom
Swine Nutrition & Production, Ph.D.
  Plano, Texas, United States
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