Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: INNOVATIVE ANIMAL MANURE TREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES FOR ENHANCED ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY

Location: Coastal Plain Soil, Water and Plant Conservation Research

Title: Uses and management of poultry litter

Authors
item Bolan, N -
item Szogi, Ariel
item Chusasavathi, T -
item Seshadri, B -
item Rothrock, Michael
item Panneerselvam, P -

Submitted to: World's Poultry Science Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 2, 2010
Publication Date: December 17, 2010
Repository URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10113/48603
Citation: Bolan, N.S., Szogi, A.A., Chuasavathi, T., Seshadri, B., Rothrock Jr, M.J., Panneerselvam, P. 2010. Uses and management of poultry litter. World's Poultry Science Journal. 66:673-698.

Interpretive Summary: The poultry industry is one of the largest and fastest growing agro-based industries in the world which is attributed to an increasing demand for poultry meat and egg products. However, a major problem facing the poultry industry is the large-scale accumulation of wastes including manure and litter which may pose disposal and pollution problems unless environmentally and economically sustainable management technologies are evolved. Most of the litter produced by poultry industry is currently applied to agricultural land as a source of nutrients and soil amendment. However, environmental pollution resulting from nutrient and contaminant leaching can occur when poultry litter is land applied under soil and climatic conditions that do not favor agronomic utilization of the manure-borne nutrients. This review examines the composition of poultry litter in relation to nutrient content and environmental contaminants, its value as a nutrient source, soil amendment, animal feed and fuel source, and cost-effective innovative technologies for improving its value. Poultry litter provides a major source of nitrogen, phosphorus and trace elements for crop production and is effective in improving the physical and biological fertility, indicating that land application remains as the main option for the utilization of this valuable resource. The alternative use of poultry litter as an animal feed and fuel source is limited by contaminants and high moisture content, respectively. The review proposes best management practices to mitigate environmental consequences associated with air and water quality parameters that are impacted by land application in order to maintain the continued productivity, profitability, and sustainability of the poultry industry.

Technical Abstract: The poultry industry is one of the largest and fastest growing agro-based industries in the world which is attributed to an increasing demand for poultry meat and egg products. However, a major problem facing the poultry industry is the large-scale accumulation of wastes including manure and litter which may pose disposal and pollution problems unless environmentally and economically sustainable management technologies are evolved. Most of the litter produced by poultry industry is currently applied to agricultural land as a source of nutrients and soil amendment. However, environmental pollution resulting from nutrient and contaminant leaching can occur when poultry litter is land applied under soil and climatic conditions that do not favor agronomic utilization of the manure-borne nutrients. This review examines the composition of poultry litter in relation to nutrient content and environmental contaminants, its value as a nutrient source, soil amendment, animal feed and fuel source, and cost-effective innovative technologies for improving its value. Poultry litter provides a major source of nitrogen, phosphorus and trace elements for crop production and is effective in improving the physical and biological fertility, indicating that land application remains as the main option for the utilization of this valuable resource. The alternative use of poultry litter as an animal feed and fuel source is limited by contaminants and high moisture content, respectively. The review proposes best management practices to mitigate environmental consequences associated with air and water quality parameters that are impacted by land application in order to maintain the continued productivity, profitability, and sustainability of the poultry industry.

Last Modified: 7/31/2014