Biodigesters take organic waste material such as livestock manure and process it into clean energy and profitable products such as liquid fertilizer and solid material that can be used as bedding.
Reinford Farms, Mifflintown, Pennsylvania Complete Mix Digester, 450 cows + foodwaste, 140 kW
“We have been using digester solids for bedding since 2008. During that time period, we have been consistently feeding food waste to our digester. The only noticeable sign in our bedding solids that we used food waste are the little white stickers that the grocery store puts on each orange, apple, etc. and some of the seeds. The rest of foods waste is liquified in the digestion process and send to our lagoon.
Prior to using bedding solids we used sawdust. I do not remember what our SCC (Somatic Cell Count) was for our cows before 2008, but I do know it was higher than it is now. We have actually been using sawdust for the last month due the need for a new screen and auger for our separator. Our average SCC from March – June was 92,000 when we were using solids. Since we started using sawdust it has gone up to 130,000 in July alone. We cannot say that the jump in SCC was only due to the switching of bedding types (it did get hotter in July), but we think it added to the jump.
We are really happy with the comfort and quality that separated solids provides for our farm. We still have the manage the solids like any other bedding type. Since we have been using solids as a bedding we have always been feeding our digester with a food waste product and that has not affected how we manage the bedding solids.”
– Brett Reinford, August 2013