Organic fertilizer made from recycled animal waste boosts yields and improves environmental health
A new review published in the journal Agronomy compiles scientific evidence showing that using recycled animal waste to manage fertility for food production is important for boosting in yields in environmentally and economically sustainable ways. The paper argues that the use of animal waste not only improves soil and crop health, but it also provides an important outlet for livestock byproducts and their waste that would otherwise be disposed of in ways that cause environmental pollution. The review presents pros and cons for various methods used to recycle animal waste such as composting, vermicomposting, anaerobic digestion, and drying, and explores their efficiency in boosting crop yields, with composted and dried manures coming out on top. The review also presents scientific evidence that shows how using recycled animal waste improves soil health components by increasing beneficial soil microbial communities, soil nutrients, soil structure, soil organic matter, and soil disease suppression. The paper also argues that the use of synthetic fertilizers cause harm to the environment in various ways, and that using organic soil amendments is the most sustainable practice for future farming. This review provides the science to show how using recycled animal waste helps improve not just environmental health, but also crop yields, which helps farmers meet their bottom lines while providing more food for our growing global population. While this work shows the importance of using organic soil amendments of animal origin, other recent science shows that when properly managed, these soil amendments pose very little food safety risks to consumers.
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