Earthbank Resource Systems blend Fish waste with carbon, and placed into a “block” that is capped with a mixed blend of wood waste and partially cured compost.
As is well known, fishery and fish farm industry have developed rapidly in recent years, but the catching and processing of fish also create a very great deal of fish waste. For example, among over 850 thousand tonnes fish in United Kingdom, it is considered that only forty three percents is treated as final products for human food consumption while the rest of 57% is deemed as fish garbage. Fish wastes can cause adverse effects on both the area environment and wider coastal zone at various ecosystem levels by polluting water and aquatic plant and spreading parasites, bacteria and diseases. Some countries have also passed laws and regulations to ban discarding fish waste, with exceptions, into fresh water or within 100 feet of shore. Therefore, in the face of such a large quantity of fish waste, if without proper disposal, the surroundings of human would suffer the deepening crisis and our ecosystem would be damaged.
What is Fish Waste Composting
Composting, the process of allowing organic material to decompose in a controlled setting, is a natural organic fertilizer made from various plants residual (such as cow dung manure, fish waste, crop straw, weed, tree leaves and other rejected materials), mixing with man and beast manure through decomposition process. From the past experience, fish waste composting is a relatively fresh, practical and environmentally friendly method to dispose fish garbage to get rid of the undesired fish parts and their disgusting smell, turning fish waste into valuable product with marketable worth on soil. In composting, wastes such as unwanted fish parts should be mixed with wood and green wastes (like leaves, crop straw, sawdust, wood chips and so on) that can provide a receiving bed for fish residuals. During the process of compost, microorganisms in the pile feed on the waste and generate a large amount of heat, pasteurizing the wastes, removing foul smell, and killing disease organism.
How to Compost Fish Waste
As an efficient way to turn fish remains into organic materials, fish waste composting is a natural and beneficial process to produce fertilizers for crop land, garden and other farms. Here, let’s talk about fish waste composting technology and some important points.
- Collect fish wastes and place them in several layers with carbon (wood chips, rice hulls or straw, etc.), nitrogen (fish remains), air and moisture. Remember to turn the piles for aeration, which can make sure piles can get enough air for better composting. There is a compost turner machine that is specially designed turning equipment for oxygen fermenting organic materials. With the advanced technology and solid material, this machine has high automation, simple operation and large capacity, all of which makes it become a popular compost turner among big farmers in America and Europe.
- Usually, commercial or industrial composting facility should be a quite large-scale operating project with carefully controlled setup, always located far away from the crowded area because less people would suffer odors and pests from these composting setups. For business or institution producing fish waste, the organic materials can be easily decomposed into good quality compost by using industrial composting facility.
- With high water content, fish waste is always accompanied with odor production and a lot of leachate. In order to deal with these problems, composting workers should build piles with good ventilation and aeration to remain aerobic and avoid stagnant water. Meanwhile, it is better to use plenty of bulking agents with high C:N ratio (like sawdust or wood chips) in decomposition process so as to decrease leachate.
- According to available space, compost pile size should be various. But the minimum pile for productive decomposition should be ten Cubic Feet, or 3’x3’x3’ is also feasible. Through some period (maybe several weeks or longer) of decomposition, the temperature of pile will descend to surrounding temperature, after that, fish waste composting would succeed soon. And finished composting products can be applied as fertilizer in garden, farm and plant landscape.
See more information on factors affecting compost quality by clicking this link.
Fish Waste Composting Benefits & Applications
With proper disposal decomposition, fish remains can be turned “waste” into wealth, not only for environment and agriculture, but also for fishery industry. To be specific, fish waste composting can aid in pollution abatement and building fairly good ecological environment, protecting water resources from contamination. Moreover, it’s beneficial to increase soil nutrient content, restrain some plant disease, decrease parasites and eliminate weed seeds. As organic fertilizer, high quality fish waste composting also has marketable value, which can increase extra income opportunity. Besides, it also help to end the wastes of recyclable raw ingredients through returning nutritions back to agriculture. In virtue of all these advantages, fish waste compost can be applied into farm, garden, vegetable production, field crops, trees and landscapes as soil amendment and fertilizer supplement to increase soil organic matter and nutrients, promote moisture holding ability, and then enhance production and quality.