The Centre de Développement du Porc du Québec (CDPQ) implemented its BROME Composting System at the end of 2020 as part of its new training center and farm located in the municipality of Armagh in the Regional County Municipality of Bellechasse, Quebec. The CDPQ is a non-profit organisation whose mission is to direct research, innovation and knowledge-sharing to foster a prosperous and sustainable pork industry.
Composting mortality helps to increase on-farm biosecurity and protect the herd. Beyond this important consideration, composting carcasses :
- Eliminates visits by the renderer, considered a potential source of contamination by transporting pathogens and illnesses from other farms.
- Improves the management and logistics due to less frequent renderer pick-ups, the latter requiring storing carcasses in refrigerators.
- Saves time since the composter is there to dispose of mortality as they arise.
- Offers and ecological alternative to incineration.
The heated room in which the system is located was planned for in the construction of the new building. The system includes a BROME 516 Rotary Drum Composter that is 56 inches wide and 16 feet long, a fixed trommel screen at the exit and a fume hood to capture and help evacuate water vapour. The wood shavings that are used as bulking agent ar also stored in the same room. They are delivered wrapped in brown paper which itself is beneficial as the wrapping itself is a bulking agent.
Ease of Storage and Transport
To collect outgoing compost, a bulk bag designed with aeration slits is placed at the exit of the composter. These bags are stored in the same room to continue its secondary and curing phases and then piled outside in the field before export to a neighbouring farm where the compost is then spread. It is important to note that in this jurisdiction regulations forbid the use of compost from animal mortality on crops destined for human consumption.
A ‘Hog-tipper’ Made-to-Measure
Not having a tractor to introduce mortalities into the composter and considering that the composter is installed indoors, an easy method needed to be devised for employees to introduce carcasses while reducing the risk of injury. Remember that one female pig can weigh up to 215 kg! Brome Compost, in collaboration with CDPQ, designed a system that would not only lift the carcass but also tip it seamlessly into the composter through the sliding door.
Remote Process and Equipment Tracking
The CDPQ is also the first Brome Compost facility to use a smart control panel as part of its operation. In this case, the system reads composting temperatures in the cylinder, warns of mechanical errors, permits the changing of cylinder rotation frequencies remotely as well as blower intensity for the aeration system that maintains an oxygen-rich environment.
With its BROME Composting System, the CDPQ showcases its proper (and wise) management of its on-farm mortality.