- Agronomic: barley, corn, oats, potatoes, grass (misc. perennial), hay
- Animal Products: dairy
- Animal Production: manure management, preventive practices, feed/forage
- Crop Production: nutrient cycling, organic fertilizers, application rate management
- Education and Training: technical assistance, demonstration, extension, on-farm/ranch research, participatory research
- Farm Business Management: new enterprise development, feasibility study, whole farm planning
- Pest Management: sanitation
- Production Systems: agroecosystems, holistic management
- Soil Management: organic matter
- Sustainable Communities: new business opportunities, urban/rural integration, sustainability measures
This project designed and constructed an anaerobic digester system on a smaller sized (350 cow) dairy commonly found in the region. The system demonstrates a waste management system that: produces renewable energy; diversifies family farm income; reduces odors, pathogens, and greenhouse gas emissions; produces fertilizer, bedding material, and compost all while protecting the quality of the environment.
This project has the following objectives:
Develop a benchmark of sustainable agriculture for the dairy industry to increase profitability, lessen reliance on non-renewable energy sources, and showcase the power of partnerships to maintain the economic strength of local agriculture;
Demonstrate the environmental benefits of anaerobic digestion: greenhouse gas reduction, nutrient conservation and recycling, odor and pathogen reduction, renewable energy production and utilization, and water quality protection;
Showcase a sustainable agricultural practice that is designed with heavy producer involvement, which result in a reliable, easily maintained system; and
Widely promote the project’s environmental and economical benefits to increase public education of the use of this technology.