The North American Manure Expo was held at Fair Oaks Farms in Northern Indiana on Wednesday and Thursday. Attendees went on farm tours on Wednesday that included a dairy and a poultry/beef operation. Educational seminars happened on Thursday, including a session on managing “that smell”. Dr. Albert Heber is a Purdue professor of ag and biological engineering. He told HAT that one thing a lot of producers have already done to manage odor is going to a deep pit system.
“Lagoons are almost a thing of the past. Deep pit systems are less odors for neighbors than the lagoon system because that is subject to the wind and so on. So, it’s just the fact that swine producers are using deep pit facilities. That’s a good thing.”
Heber added that there are other best practices that can be used.
“Dust carries odor, so ways to reduce dust is good. There are ways to reduce dust by enclosing the feed delivery, and the oil and fat in the feed now, a lot of swine producers already put oil and fat in the feed, so the dust emissions from swine facilities are already a lot less than they used to be 20-30 years ago. There are some quality assurance things that can be put into place. Handling the mortalities in a good way using composting or rendering and doing those things in a prompt manner of getting rid of the carcasses.”
Heber says cleaning up feed spills and preventing manure spills with the application equipment and transport equipment are key to odor management as well.
The Manure Expo began in Wisconsin in 2001 and this is the first time it has made its way to Indiana.