Reducing Manure Issues

As the livestock industry grows, so do the concerns of the public.  Air quality, water quality, odors, and flies are all legitimate issues that producers need to address to be good neighbors. And, it isn’t healthy for the animals to be constantly exposed to ammonia and other hazards of manure pits.

Dr. Jim Ladlie is the president of Profit Pro Ag in Albert Lea, Minnesota. He says one way to solve manure issues while at the same time reaping other benefits is by treating it with the right microbial cultures.

"And what they do when you put them in the pit is they digest the manure. They retain nutrient, they drop the odor because odor leaving is nutrients leaving, they liquify, you maintain pit capacity, they drop salt levels, and you reduce your agitation in half which helps with fuel, energy, and labor," says Ladlie. "And, you improve agronomically in the field after three-years of doing this, yields 5%-15%."

Ladlie says most of the live, vegetative microbes come from the soil and know the job they’re supposed to do.

"The first role of a microbial community is take out toxicity. So they take out the toxins, the salts, the putrification, and then they go about balancing that manure and they add things that weren’t originally there," he says. "They really enhance the value of that manure, but they solve a lot of the issues around manure in regard to when you have animals concentrated."

Ladlie says raw manure treated for a year with the microbes and nothing else added will turn into a tea-like substance with no odor or solids. Producers then use this liquid as a carrier for their starter and foliar fertilizers.

Learn more about reducing issues with manure