AMES composting has long been an option to eradicate animal mortality. It can be done on the farm in general, requires little equipment and additional materials, and the end product can be used to improve soil fertility.

Although composting is not a standard practice in many farms due to other established practices, some new or potential changes in the situation have sparked renewed interest in composting. Whether you’re interested in reducing or eliminating on-site truck stop rendering, or working on a comprehensive biosecurity plan for your farm, composting might be on your radar right now.

A new publication from the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and the Iowa Pork Industry Center can help provide the information you need.

Dave Stender, pig specialist at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, is one of the authors. While the publication is written for beginners, anyone who wants to learn more about problems, options, and steps can benefit.

“Two main concerns with composting are odor and leachate, which is the water that has seeped through a solid,” he said. “Both can be easily addressed by selecting and managing suitable co-composting materials.”

The publication describes how to set up the base for the compost, cover the carcass to divert rain, and choose the co-compost material that will act as a biofilter to stop unpleasant odors.

Download Field Tips for Composting Successfully for free from the Iowa State Extension Store.

The Iowa Pork Industry Center was founded in 1994 as a coordinated effort by the Agriculture (now Agriculture and Life Sciences) and Veterinary Medicine colleges in the state of Iowa. Its mission is to promote efficient pork production technologies in Iowa, maintain the leadership position in the Iowa pork industry, and strengthen rural development efforts. IPIC focuses its efforts on programs that are an integral and complementary part of ISU Extension and Outreach. IPIC provides Iowa producers with accurate, timely information to help them run their operations more efficiently and profitably.