Skip to main content
ARS Home » Plains Area » College Station, Texas » Southern Plains Agricultural Research Center » Food and Feed Safety Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #352213

Research Project: Identification of the Ecological Niches and Development of Intervention Strategies to Reduce Pathogenic Foodborne Pathogens in Poultry

Location: Food and Feed Safety Research

Title: Larval digestion of different manure types by the black soldier fly (Diptera: Stratiomyidae) impacts associated volatile emissions

Author
item Beskin, Kelly - Texas A&M University
item Holcomb, Chelsea - Texas A&M University
item Cammack, Jonathan - Texas A&M University
item Crippen, Tawni - Tc
item Knap, Anthony - Texas A&M University
item Sweet, Stephen - Texas A&M University
item Tomberlin, Jeffery - Texas A&M University

Submitted to: Waste Management
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/14/2018
Publication Date: 4/1/2018
Citation: Beskin, K.V., Holcomb, C.D., Cammack, J.A., Crippen, T.L., Knap, A.H., Sweet, S.T., Tomberlin, J.K. 2018. Larval digestion of different manure types by the black soldier fly (Diptera: Stratiomyidae) impacts associated volatile emissions. Waste Management. 74:213-220. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasman.2018.01.019.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wasman.2018.01.019

Interpretive Summary: Odor emissions (volatiles) from animal waste are an annoyance for communities close to animal production facilities. Additionally, bacterial pathogens can reside in these wastes. The black soldier fly (BSF), Hermetia illucens (L.), is being investigated as a means to recycle wastes and produce protein for use as feed. We examined the ability of BSF to reduce offensive odors associated with animal wastes. BSF were raised on freshly thawed as well as the digested poultry, swine, and dairy manure at different densities and emissions and compared to manure without BSF. Manure samples were analyzed for relative amounts of nine select odorous volatiles: phenol, 4-methylphenol, indole, 3-methylindole, propanoic acid, 2-methylpropanoic acid, butanoic acid, 3-methylbutanoic acid, and pentanoic acid. BSF reduced emissions of all volatiles by 87% or greater. Complete reductions of 2-methly propanoic acid in poultry manure, phenol, 4-methylphenol, indole, and all five acids in swine manure, and 4-methylphenol, indole, 3-methylindole, and all five acids in dairy manure were observed. These data demonstrate additional benefits of using BSF as a cost-effective and environmentally friendly means of livestock manure management to reduce odors and volume, and therefore pathogens, in comparison to current methods.

Technical Abstract: Volatile emissions from decomposing animal waste are known environmental pollutants. The black soldier fly, Hermetia illucens (L.), is being pursued for industrialization as a means to recycle wastes and produce protein for use as food and feed. We examined the ability of BSFL to reduce noxious odors associated with animal wastes. BSFL were reared under laboratory conditions on poultry, swine, and dairy manure at rates of 18.0 and 27.0 g every other day until 40% reached the prepupal stage. Volatile emissions were collected and analyzed from freshly thawed as well as the digested waste when 90% of the BSFL reached the prepupal stage. Volatiles were also collected simultaneously from manure not inoculated with BSFL (nondigested) and held under similar conditions. Manure samples were analyzed for relative amounts of nine select odorous VOCs: phenol, 4-methylphenol, indole, 3-methylindole, propanoic acid, 2-methylpropanoic acid, butanoic acid, 3-methylbutanoic acid, and pentanoic acid. BSFL reduced emissions of all VOCs by 87% or greater. Complete reductions were observed for 2-methly propanoic acid in digested poultry manure, phenol, 4-methylphenol, indole, and all five acids in digested swine manure, and 4-methylphenol, indole, 3-methylindole, and all five acids in digested dairy manure. This study is the first to identify volatile emissions from manure digested by BSFL and compare to those found in non-digested manure. These data demonstrate additional benefits of using BSFL as a cost-effective and environmentally friendly means of livestock manure management in comparison to current methods.