Poultry litter market

first_imgBy Dan RahnUniversity of GeorgiaThe Georgia Poultry Federation has teamed up with the Universityof Georgia to launch a new Web site designed to help move poultrylitter to where it’s needed in the state.The Georgia Poultry Federation Litter Market (www.galitter.org)will allow poultry growers with litter to sell to post ads thatpotential buyers can view. Farmers and others who want to buylitter for its nutrients may also post ads. So can anyone whoprovides services such as poultry house clean-out or litterhauling or spreading.The service is free.Poultry growers, brokers and buyers can post ads telling theservices they need or the amount and location of litter they haveor want. Visitors can browse the ads or conduct searches based onlocation or other factors.High hopes”We hope www.galitter.org will be a valuable service to poultrygrowers throughout the state,” said Georgia Poultry FederationPresident Abit Massey.”In many parts of the state,” Massey said, “poultry litter is instrong demand for use as a fertilizer for crops and pastures.This Web site should help create a stronger market for the litterand assist poultry growers in linking up with potential buyers.”UGA Extension Service engineer Mark Risse, who helped develop thesite, said he hopes visitors will remember that the site is adatabase. It won’t have a lot of data in it at first. But thatwill change with time.Give it time”When we first made it live there was no data in it,” Risse said.”I checked after the first few days and there were six or eightads on it. It will take some time for it to build up. We justdon’t want somebody to go there and say, ‘Well, there’s not muchthere,’ and not come back.”Take the time to check the site, bookmark it, post or answer anad and check back if you don’t find what you need, he said.The Web site could help solve the problem of having too muchpoultry litter in some places and not enough in others, Rissesaid.Too much, too little”We have a few counties in north Georgia where if we land-appliedall of the litter there at agronomic rates on every acre ofavailable cropland and pasture, we’d still have too much litter,”he said. “We’d still have too much nitrogen and phosphorus.”But south Georgia, he said, has many areas where farmers can’tget enough litter. “We hope this Web site will facilitate moreexchange between north and south Georgia,” he said.Risse said the Web site could lead to new outlets for litter,too, such as producing compost for organic farmers and gardenersor developing power plants that could produce energy from poultrylitter.”Many applications such as these depend on consistent, dependablesupplies of poultry litter,” he said. “Hopefully, this Web sitecould help them find these suppliers.”Chicken kingGeorgia is the largest poultry-producing state in the UnitedStates, with 2.15 billion chickens generating $2.5 billion a yearin farm cash receipts, according to the Georgia AgriculturalStatistics Service.All those chickens produce about 1.5 million tons of litter peryear. The nutrients in that litter make it valuable as a fairlylow-cost fertilizer. Too much of it in a given place, though, canpollute the environment.That’s where the new Web site comes in.”A few other states have successful litter-broker sites,” Rissesaid. “We’re hoping it will be a good solution to having too muchof a resource in one place and not enough in another.”(Dan Rahn is a news editor with the University of GeorgiaCollege of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img

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