Researchers to Evaluate Effectiveness of In-Barn Biofilters

CANADA - New research being conducted on behalf of the Manitoba Livestock Manure Management Initiative is evaluating the effectiveness of in-barn biofilters designed to reduce odour emissions from swine operations, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 11 December 2007
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To foster increased public acceptance of hog production, the Manitoba Livestock Manure Management Initiative has commissioned the development and evaluation of in-barn biofilters to reduce swine barn odours.

The research is being conducted by the University of Manitoba at the National Centre for Livestock and the Environment's swine research facility at Glenlea.

MLMMI executive director Brandy Street explains this is an in-barn biofilter system as opposed to the usual systems set up outside the barn.

Brandy Street-Manitoba Livestock Manure Management Initiative

It will be constructed above the floor so that it will take up minimal floor space which is important to producers as they're always interested in maximizing floor space for the animals.

It will have a wood chip media to pull the air through the biofilter before allowing it to exhaust to the outside and that media will hopefully filter out the odours before the air is exhausted to the outside environment.

This project first of all involves development and design of the biofilter itself in such a way that the producer is able to manage they system once it's running easily on his own so it has to be designed with removable cartridges that the farmer himself can replace and those will be replaced at the end of each hog cycle so that biosecurity protocols aren't breached.

The biofilter has been designed and it's now just being installed in the barn and, once that's completed. the project itself will start.

Researchers are looking at how effectively it removes odour, whether it changes any air flow patterns in the barn and how it affects the animals in terms of their growth performance, feed intake and things like that.

The project is scheduled to conclude by late spring 2009 and Street expects further commercial development of the technology to begin at that time.

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