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Composting Technology for Agricultural Waste

Improper disposal of agricultural waste can cause serious environmental pollution. Composting technology can use microbial fermentation to convert agricultural waste into organic fertilizer, which not only alleviates environmental pollution but also turns waste into treasure.

Composting technlogy

What's Composting Technology

With the rapid development of planting, animal husbandry and agricultural product processing industries, agricultural waste is increasing. Agricultural waste refers to organic waste generated during agricultural production and processing, including straw, livestock and poultry manure, bean dregs, etc. Its harmless treatment is one of the current research hotspots. Agricultural waste composting technology refers to the use of bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms to decompose raw materials and convert agricultural waste into organic fertilizer to achieve the purpose of mitigating environmental pollution and recycling agricultural resources.

Value of Agriculture Waste

Agricultural waste can be divided into five categories according to its source: agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry, industry, and human life. Agricultural waste contains a large amount of carbon and nitrogen elements, and carbon and nitrogen elements are the basis for the growth of compost microorganisms.

Carbon sources are the main materials for composting, including wheat, straw, corn straw, rice straw, cassava residue, rice husks, fruit husks, camellia husks, wood chips, weeds, litter, etc., which are characterized by high carbon content, low nitrogen content, and slow natural decomposition.

Nitrogen source mainly refers to the manure of livestock and poultry breeding, which is characterized by high nitrogen content. With the large-scale development of animal husbandry, the amount of livestock and poultry manure is increasing, especially pig manure, cow manure, chicken manure, and sheep manure.

Our Experience for Composting Process

Carbon source and nitrogen source ratio. Carbon source and nitrogen source materials must be prepared according to the carbon-nitrogen ratio (25-35):1 to achieve better composting effects.

If the carbon-to-nitrogen ratio is too high (more than 35:1), microorganisms must first oxidize the excess carbon, resulting in a decrease in the decomposition rate and a prolonged fermentation time; If the carbon to nitrogen ratio is too low (less than 25:1), nitrogen will volatilize in the form of ammonia and affect the quality of compost.

Adding microbial compost starter during composting can promote the decomposition of organic matter, improve composting efficiency and shorten the composting cycle. Microbial inoculant is a composite reagent containing multiple strains of common dominant microorganisms in compost. Bacterial strains include Bacillus, Actinomycetes, Cellulobacteria, Lactobacilli, etc. Fungal strains include yeast, mold, white rot fungi, etc.

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Precautions of Composting

1. Compost Ventilation Adjustment: During the fermentation process of agricultural waste composting, aeration should be moderate. If ventilation is poor, aerobic microorganisms will be inhibited and anaerobic fermentation will occur easily, affecting the composting effect. If ventilation is excessive, the activity of aerobic microorganisms will be too strong, resulting in the loss of water and nutrients.

2. Temperature Adjustment: The fermentation temperature is maintained between 50°C and 70°C. The reasons for low fermentation temperature (< 45 ℃) include low room temperature, agglomeration of materials, poor ventilation, excessive moisture, etc. The main reason for the fermentation temperature being too high (> 70 ℃) is insufficient water.

3. Moisture Content Adjustment: The initial water content is 45% ~ 65%. Too low a water content (< 40%) will cause few water-soluble nutrients required by microorganisms, a low fermentation rate, and fermentation will stop if the water content is less than 10%; Poor aeration with a high water content (> 65%) can lead to anaerobic fermentation.

4. pH Adjustment: An initial pH of 8 promotes fermentation, which decreases over time, and a pH that is too low (< 5) inhibits fermentation. For this reason, lime or gypsum can be used to adjust the pH of the fermentation material.

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