A B.C. company is turning livestock manure into fertilizer
By Diego Flammini
A Salmon Arm, B.C. company is repurposing livestock manure into useable, quality fertilizer products.
Valid Manufacturing, which “designs, engineers and manufactures innovative and reliable solutions for a wide range of industries,” according to its website, developed a way to remove nutrients from livestock manure.
“We are able, with basically a one-trick system, to pull out about 60 per cent of the phosphorous from dairy manure, almost 40 per cent of the nitrates and about one third of the potassium,” Chad Shipmaker, CEO of Valid Manufacturing, told Farms.com. “We (mechanically) separate the liquid from the solid and the solid has about half of the phosphorous.”
These on-farm units could also be used on other livestock operations using a slurry manure system.
Valid Manufacturing photo.
The B.C. government awarded Valid a $320,000 grant to help with manufacturing.
Valid is in the process of marketing the new fertilizer to different industries
The company is working with Lucent BioSciences, who received a $245,000 grant from the provincial government for this purpose.
The new fertilizer product could be attractive to multiple industries, Shipmaker said.
“It’s very light and we’re down to a moisture content of about 52 per cent, so it’s not an offensive material,” he said. “It’s like a compost product.”
Valid has two systems up and running on farms in the province. One in Abbotsford and one in Grindrod.
Early feedback from farmers who have used the new fertilizer product has been positive, said Grant Meikle, a Valid representative.
“The Lucent group has done many test trials already on different plants like tomatoes,” he said. “The growth pattern seems to be very much enhanced by the use of this product. Everybody is pretty excited about its value.”
Parties outside of B.C. have contacted Valid about acquiring one of the nutrient recovery units.
This includes an American dairy farmer, Shipmaker said.
“We’ve heard from some leading dairy farmers in Manitoba, we were in touch with someone in Nova Scotia and a large dairy in Wisconsin,” he said.