Agricultural waste refers to waste produced from agricultural operations, including waste from farms, poultry houses, and slaughterhouses, and agricultural waste management minimizes agro-waste.
Agricultural waste used to be burned, but now agro-waste is recycled and turned into biogas.
This recyclable and renewable fuel is being used as a sustainable energy source in several European countries. The aim is to make biogas more economically available to producers while ensuring better agricultural and other organic waste utilization.
In Italy, farmers dump agricultural waste in the countryside and let it rot away, but that practice has been abolished. Agricultural waste is collected in large piles and transferred to municipalities where farmers use it to produce biogas to run their farms and process organic waste into compost. Biogas has a much lower carbon footprint than conventional fossil fuels, but agro-waste now also has a place in recycling organic waste.
Environmentally friendly waste management has been seen as a major challenge. In Italy, waste has been considered a nuisance. Still, thanks to the modernization and the introduction of green waste management, especially to agro-waste, we now know that some organic waste can be a viable energy source, thanks to new technologies and techniques. Farmers can now collect and dispose of waste in a sustainable manner.
The waste is collected in large piles and transported, and stored on agricultural sites where agro-waste is burnt in open-air pyres that use renewable energy, creating energy that c can use to heat homes and produce fertilizer that c can use on organic crops. Local authorities have also taken steps to manage this resource and made waste collection and disposal more convenient. A system of centralized disposal bins has also been established, thus helping local authorities and citizens be more environmentally conscious.
Renewable biogas systems for agriculture have been researched and developed throughout Europe. And it appears the system is gaining more and more attention. In March 2015, the European Commission’s agriculture directorate formed an advisory group to improve biogas management.
Other European countries, including Italy, are already testing their agricultural biogas technologies. But agricultural biogas is not the only way to make use of waste. As is the case with food waste, c can also recycle waste from agricultural companies.
Agro-waste can also be used for compost or bio-fuel. Biogas can produce electricity and bio-gas for use in agriculture, waste management, and heat production. The potential is there, but agricultural waste management and the use of agro-waste is still a relatively new concept for some countries.
It’s a far-off goal that we need to promote continuously. Have you ever thought about this topic, and what are your thoughts? Thank you for reading and supporting Agrol Bosnia and Herzegovina has at least two solid waste recycling facilities: Lada Agri-Bio, Ljubljana, and Delta Biogas-Bioteke Sarajevo.
They provide alternative income to farmers by taking their waste and processing it, providing employment and decent wages to people living in the region. In Croatia, Agrol operates waste management centers, recycling recyclable agricultural and household waste.
Agro facilities have been built by the Croatian government to serve the country’s agriculture. The facilities have been built and operated as partnerships, providing employment to local people and turning agricultural waste into a valuable resource. The recycling facilities focus mainly on the needs of the farming sector.
Currently, Agro has at least four different facilities, including the Kulmerhof Biogas Plant in Korup, a waste gasification plant that converts agricultural waste into biogas, and several small biogas plants. Mexico has one agricultural waste recycling facility in Querétaro. Here, farmers deposit their waste in a one-of-a-kind facility that can safely handle waste from animals and plants.
The facility has a very high level of technical stability and can be operated continuously for years. The waste, after being processed, is mainly used as fertilizer, while the rest is used for agricultural purposes.
The biogas produced by the facility can be used for heating homes and can also be used to make electricity for the neighboring towns. The cost of using agricultural waste is much lower than that of other waste-disposal methods in the area. Since 2014, a biogas production plant has operated in the area of Montemorelos, Mexico.
The plant, owned by Socorro & Caquetex Natural Gas, processes the organic waste from around the neighboring municipalities and produces high-quality biogas, then transferred into the local distribution network.
Local people can purchase the biogas at around 17 cents per cubic meter, which is cheaper than all other forms of energy. At the same time, the gas is also cheaper than gasoline or diesel, at around 20 cents per cubic meter. In India, agro-waste and agricultural waste has been recognized as a major option for both organic and non-organic wastes.
In such a way, agro-waste and agricultural waste have become part of people’s daily lives and become an indispensable part of the country’s organic waste management. One example is the Agrol Agro-waste Management Plant in Farukkhan, India, which recycles the organic wastes of rice mills and agricultural companies.
Agro Agro-waste is one of the largest rice mill operations in southern India and is expanding its plant. The Agro Agro-waste Plant consists of five large chambers, or bags, that each hold around 50 metric tons of rice mill wastes. The rice mill wastes are mixed with organic waste and manure from the surrounding farms, and the mixture is left to dry and absorb additional organic materials.
The rice mill waste and organic wastes are then fed into bioreactors with a fixed ratio of organic to agricultural waste. The bioreactors create the basic environment that c can then use to create agricultural biogas.
The agro-waste products are highly concentrated and can be used as a fuel for generating electricity. The plant can provide direct employment to hundreds of people, generate income for farmers, reduce waste, and provide decent wages. The plant has received recognition as the first plant in India that uses agricultural waste as a biofuel. Agro operates at least four similar plants, including two in Karnataka, India, and Bangladesh.
In Bangladesh, Agrol operated a farm waste plant for the exclusive use of the neighboring Mukhia Farm, which is a dairy farm with over 900 cows. The site is located around 30 kilometers north of Khulna city. The plant consists of two treatment units and three facilities to collect agricultural waste from the dairy farm. A well-equipped farm waste processing facility is used to process the dairy farm waste.
This facility, along with the two remaining facilities, is operated by Agrol Agro-waste. As part of the project, Agro also produces biofuels that the dairy farm uses and the region’s people. The dairy farm produces about 300 tons of milk daily. Such large-scale projects could make agriculture and agro-waste more sustainable and reduce agricultural waste that is currently not being used for a range of different purposes.
C can focus on the various steps on reducing agricultural waste in rural areas, where agriculture is practiced the most. Local authorities and agricultural cooperatives can organize farmers to produce and process their own agricultural waste for agricultural use. Such a step would help the agriculture sector, both in terms of financial benefits and increased technological efficiency.
The agricultural waste consists of all of the leftover materials from agricultural production, such as crops, compost, straw, and manure.
Agriculture also produces all kinds of liquid waste — liquid from all kinds of agriculture operations. These liquid wastes are called agro toxins and are generally dumped in ditches or landfills and eventually become soil contaminants.
Their production process and their route through the soil do not ensure that they are harmless, resulting in agricultural waste becoming one of the main causes of agricultural pollution in our land, air, and water. Most of the agro toxins are persistent, meaning that they stick around in soil and water for long periods of time.
This can have serious consequences for the agricultural production of the next crop, resulting in loss of yield, loss of farm productivity, increased pollution, and the environment. The products of agrotoxins are highly concentrated in soil, water, and agricultural waste.
The chemical breakdown of agrotoxins occurs when rain falls, and the soil and water are disturbed by agriculture. The water and the soils then carry the agrotoxins into waterways or landfills. Agrotoxins have the potential to contaminate drinking water, livestock, and food.
In particular, agrotoxins have been linked to the risks of cancer. They can also have a direct effect on the environment because they destroy aquatic ecosystems. Some agricultural wastes, especially agricultural crop residues, contain toxic pollutants and can contaminate water and soil.
There are already efforts to make agricultural waste less toxic. For example, there are farmers in the United States who collect corn and wheat harvested during the summer months. In Bangladesh, rice farmers have been encouraged to store their rice grains for two weeks in the soil.
The rice seeds are then collected after the two weeks are over. Such crops lock up nitrogen and other nutrients and prevent them from being used by plants in the following seasons. Seeds can also be used to produce biofuels. In 2012, researchers from Agrol had produced biofuel from agricultural waste by using genetically modified rice seeds.
Agricultural waste also generates a large amount of organic waste. While it is not biologically harmful to humans, it has a high volume of carbon dioxide emissions that add to the greenhouse gases in the environment.
The study has been published in the International Journal of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Related: Commercial agriculture generates the most toxic agricultural waste. Agricultural waste poses a serious risk to the environment Research focuses on reducing agrotoxins from agricultural waste Organic waste is the waste from organic farming.
The organic wastes that are produced by most organic farming systems are composed of residuals from harvesting vegetables, storing compost and fertilizers, harvesting pine needles, and fertilizing livestock.
Organic farming creates a huge amount of organic waste, so organic waste management is essential for organic farms. Even though the amount of organic waste organic farms produce is huge, organic waste management is not simple, especially since organic farms usually rely on landfills or landfill waste management.
Fortunately, c can manage organic waste to ensure its removal from agricultural land. Wasting organic waste does not necessarily produce hazardous waste.
Generally, c can recycle organic waste into compost and animal feed. C can also sell it to farmers who use it to fertilize their crops.
Related: How to use organic waste for composting Avoiding the waste caused by organic farming Translating agricultural waste to food Agrotoxins remain one of the most difficult agricultural wastes to manage.
With proper organic waste management and agricultural practices, organic waste is beneficial for the environment and the agricultural system. With proper agricultural practices, agrotoxins can be reduced.
Further, farmers can use recycled agricultural waste as fertilizers to produce healthy soil. Hence, making agriculture practices sustainable is important for protecting the environment and the agriculture system. Plans are in place to create agricultural waste management policies in Bangladesh.
However, the effectiveness of these policies is still unclear. This is because there is a lack of knowledge and awareness about agricultural waste management.
The costs of treating agricultural waste are low for many countries globally, especially countries in South Asia. For example, Bangladesh does not have a specific plan for using agricultural waste. However, it does have plans to utilize waste from fertilizer production.
Some of the agricultural waste exported from Bangladesh to India is recycled and used to create compost crops. However, the agricultural waste produced domestically is often rejected because of the lack of knowledge about agricultural waste management.
Therefore, the cost of creating agricultural waste management policies is high. The cost of recycling the agricultural waste in Bangladesh is low compared to other regions in the region.
This is because agricultural waste in Bangladesh primarily consists of waste products taken directly from crops. It is important to have sustainable agricultural practices to maintain the best agricultural soil and the best agricultural products that can satisfy the needs of the people. Agricultural waste and agricultural manure are precious and can serve as sustainable and safe.
Agricultural waste is a result of various agricultural operations. It includes manure and other wastes from farms, poultry houses, and slaughterhouses; harvest waste; fertilizer run-off from fields; pesticides that enter into the water, air, or soils; and salt and silt drained from fields.
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What classes as agricultural waste?
The agricultural industry produces many types of different streams, all of which have their own recycling or disposal methods. Some of these include:
- Green waste
- Waste silage
- Bio bed waste
- Waste oil
- Empty pesticide/chemical containers
- Waste sheep dip
- Waste medical containers/equipment
- Brake fluids
- Anything used on animals including syringes
- Fertilizer bags
- Unused animal medicines
In addition to being potentially damaging to the environment, agricultural waste may expose workers to harmful biological material (biohazards).
Storing agricultural waste can multiply the hazards associated with it since stored waste can release harmful gases.
Specific biohazards related to agricultural waste include:
- animal-borne diseases (zoonoses)
Removing waste products such as manure from animal and poultry houses can potentially expose workers to agricultural dust, resulting in respiratory problems, such as occupational asthma. Exposure to waste-containing pesticides and other agrochemicals poses additional risks. Personal protective equipment (PPE) and personal respiratory equipment (PRE) can protect workers from many types of exposure.
Many agricultural wastes are economically productive resources. Agricultural slurry, for example, can be converted to fertilizer. This incentivizes waste storage as an economic activity. Safety hazards involved in waste storage include exposure to environments containing carbon dioxide (CO2), ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, and methane gas.
At unsafe levels, these gases can be toxic, flammable, and potentially explosive. Waste storage environments may also produce low-oxygen environments that can endanger workers who enter without proper protection.
Employers have a duty to provide employees with the equipment and training necessary for safely handling agricultural wastes.
Workplaces must have first aid supplies available for treating injuries on-site and plans for addressing accidents or spills involving agricultural waste. Workplace risk is also reduced via requirements for a minimum safe distance between worker camps and environments containing agricultural waste.
Agricultural wastes as hazardous material are addressed as part of the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) for Farmers.
How do you dispose of agricultural waste?
There are stringent controls on the regulation of waste that farmers and the agricultural industry produce.
Due to the large amount of hazardous waste that farms produce, farmers and anyone involved in the industry must know the correct ways to manage their farm waste. When dealing with hazardous waste, farmers must follow the health and safety regulations, including the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH).
The best way to ensure that your business follows the relevant regulations is to outsource an approved waste provider.
How is the agricultural waste disposed of?
Disposal of agricultural waste is, in many cases, similar to regular waste disposal methods. As in, solid materials are often sent to landfills or incinerators. However, this can obviously harm the planet, which those who work within agriculture are likely to be particularly passionate about.
In fact, the future of farming relies on taking care of the planet. Fortunately, there are other methods of agricultural waste disposal, such as composting and recycling, which c can implement to help protect the environment.
For example, organic fertilizers can be used repeatedly, and c can use animal waste (faces) in composting. Both of which will allow agricultural land to thrive.
Why is agricultural waste a problem?
Waste is always a problem, and we each have a responsibility to ensure that we both minimize waste and find a way to ensure we properly dispose of any waste we produce.
Agricultural waste poses a huge problem if not properly disposed of, as agricultural waste can have a distinctly negative impact on the environment. In addition to the dangers of landfills and incineration, the chemicals used in farming and agriculture can cause pollution if they end up in the wrong places.
For example, pesticides that allow fields to flourish can cause mass pollution levels in rivers and streams. Polluted water damages the ecosystem and can lead to animals’ death and damage drinking water.
How do agricultural wastes harm the environment?
As mentioned previously, agricultural wastes impact the environment as they continue to add to the planet’s pollution. In addition to the potential dangers of chemicals/pesticides, other agricultural waste can lead to environmental harm. For example, animal agriculture can also release harmful pollutants.
How do farmers get rid of waste?
There are numerous ways in which farmers can dispose of agricultural waste. In addition to organizing regular waste collection (of both traditional and recyclable materials), many farmers chose to find ways of disposing of their waste themselves. This involves controlled fires, which, needless to say, are less than ideal for the environment or adapt their policies to ensure products can be reused or composted.
How farmers can reduce food waste?
1) Try not to purchase more products than you need.
2) Identify the products you do not use or those often left over when you can no longer use them. Minimize the amount of these that you purchase or produce.
3) Take proper care of your plants/produce to avoid planting crops that will never be harvested/will be harvested poorly.
4) Consider investing in new technologies that can help manage crop growth.
5) Recycle where possible.
6) Introducing composting to your routine.
7) Consider selling surplus products in bulk at a decreased price instead of throwing it away.
8) Donate surplus products to charities such as food banks or homeless shelters, which will ensure the product does not go to waste.
The role of the agricultural sector in human development and economic development cannot be overemphasized. Awareness for increased agricultural production is increasing, arising from the need to feed the ever-increasing human population. Interestingly, almost all agricultural activities generate wastes, which are generated in large quantities in many countries.
However, these wastes may constitute a serious threat to human health through environmental pollution, and handling them may result in huge economic loss.
Unfortunately, in many developing countries where large quantities of these wastes are generated, they are not properly managed because little is known about their potential risks and benefits. Some studies address some of the challenges of agricultural solid wastes and suggestions on how c can properly manage them.
This chapter intends to explore the major sources of agricultural solid wastes, their potential risks, and how c can properly manage them.
Increasing growth in the human population has necessitated increased agricultural production. Agricultural production in the last five decades has been said to increase more than three times. Other factors responsible for increased agricultural production include technological advancement toward the green revolution and expansion of soil for agricultural production.
It has been estimated that the agricultural sector provides about 24 million tons of food globally with accompanying health risks and threats to ecosystems. We cannot do without agriculture because food is a necessity globally, but the impact of agriculture on the environment is also evident. For example, it has been documented that about 21% of greenhouse gas emission comes from agriculture.
The negative influence of agriculture on the environment, aquatic lives, and human health have necessitated improvement in agricultural production, involving effective and efficient ways of handling agricultural solid wastes.
The global leaders have been mandated to prioritize the production of more food and energy for the increasing human population, which is estimated to exceed 10 billion by 2050, and tackle the impacts already caused. However, this mandate is expected to be achieved with lower pollutants, zero solid waste, and less fossil fuel.
The future prediction for increased agricultural production involves food production for the human population, industrial needs, and animal feed. However, every step of agricultural production, processing, and consumption generates quantities of agricultural solid wastes, depending on the type of agricultural produce or product, processing techniques, and purpose of use.
The agricultural sector is one of the main sectors generating the largest quantities of agricultural solid wastes, which may be allowed to accumulate indiscriminately and constitute a nuisance to global health and threat to food security or used as raw materials for bio-economy.
The benefits of recycling agricultural solid wastes include reducing greenhouse gas emissions and use as fossil fuel and contributing significantly to the development of new green markets, creation of jobs, production of bio-energy, and bio-conversion of agricultural solid wastes animal feed.
The emphasis on the management of agricultural solid wastes cannot be overemphasized. Agricultural solid wastes are generated from many sources. One of such sources is pesticides, including herbicides and insecticides. It has been estimated that global food production would fall by an estimated 42% if pesticides are completely stopped.
The influence of agricultural solid wastes on human health, animal health, and the environment is significant. All hands must be on deck to tackle the menace posed by the mismanagement of agricultural solid wastes. Agricultural solid wastes are mismanaged largely owing to ignorance.
Many farmers and household managers who generate these wastes do not know how to manage them effectively. Many of them do not know the health implications of what they toy with, while some who know are ‘handicapped.’ Year after year, large tons of agricultural solid wastes are being produced, with an annual increase of about 7.5%.
In many parts of developing countries, agricultural solid wastes are indiscriminately dumped or burnt in public places, thereby resulting in the generation of air pollution, soil contamination, harmful gas, smoke, and dust, and the residue may be channeled into a water source, thereby polluting the water and aquatic environment Volume 0%
- sources of agricultural solid wastes
Agricultural solid wastes are produced mainly from farming activities. However, it is not limited to the production but other activities associated with farming and the food chain. Every stage and phase of the agricultural-food chain can generate significant agricultural solid wastes. The broad classification of agricultural solid wastes includes the following:
- Animal production solid wastes;
- Food and meat processing solid wastes;
- Crop production solid wastes;
- On-farm medical solid wastes;
- Horticultural production solid wastes;
- Industrial agricultural solid wastes;
- Chemical wastes.
Animal production solid wastes—animal production solid wastes are solid wastes generated from livestock production for whatever purposes. Examples of such wastes include bedding/litter, animal carcasses, damaged feeders, water-trough, etc.
Food and meat processing solid wastes—this class of agricultural solid wastes are produced from crop or animal products for human consumption, such as abattoirs or slaughterhouses. Examples of food and meat processing agricultural solid wastes include hoofs, bones, feathers, banana peels, etc.
Crop production solid wastes—crop solid wastes are associated with agricultural solid wastes typically produced from agricultural activities involving crop production. Examples of such agricultural solid wastes are crop residues, husks, etc.
On-farm medical, solid wastes—on-farm medical, solid wastes refer to solid wastes generated from the use of drugs, insecticides, or vaccines used on or animals. Examples of such wastes include vaccine wrappers or containers, disposable needles, syringes, etc.
Horticultural production solid wastes—this group of agricultural solid wastes refers to solid wastes generated from the cultivation and maintenance of horticultural plants and landscapes for beautification. Examples of such wastes are pruning and grass cuttings.
Industrial, agricultural solid wastes—agricultural produce and livestock are not only cultivated and produced for dietary consumption. They are used for other uses, and it is not unlikely that such activities result in agricultural solid wastes. Wood processing and cuttings readily come to mind as a source of agricultural solid wastes. Paper production using agricultural products as raw materials also generates some quantities of agricultural solid wastes.
Chemical wastes—chemical wastes in this context have to do with agricultural solid wastes generated from the use of pesticides, insecticides, and herbicides on the farm or store, such as pesticide containers or bottles. Agricultural activities still depend on pesticides, insecticides, and herbicides, being handled by many uneducated and untrained farmers in developing countries, resulting in abuse by these uneducated farmers. Some uneducated farmers mishandle pesticide containers, thereby resulting in unpredictable environmental hazards. It has been reported that about 2% of pesticides remain in the containers after use, which some ignorant and uneducated users may throw in the ponds or on the open field resulting in food poisoning, environmental and water pollution, causing the death of many lives.
Agricultural solid wastes are usually generated through agricultural activities involving preparation, production, storage, processing, and consumption of agricultural produce, livestock, and products. Agricultural solid wastes are produced via:
- Farming activities
- Poor road network
- Poor electricity or lack of rural electrification
- Inadequate drying technique and storage facilities
- Food spoilage
- Kitchen-generated agricultural solid wastes
- Farming activities—the main source of agricultural solid waste generation in agriculture. Beginning from land clearing till harvest, every phase of farming activity results in agricultural waste generation. From preparing the pen for the arrival of the animals to the farm, preparation of pasture/paddock till the animals are slaughtered and sold, solid wastes are generated.
- Poor road network for transporting harvested produce from the farm to the market or storage is another avenue of generating large quantities of agricultural solid wastes. This happens largely as a result of the bad road network in some developing countries, which may result in a road accident or delay of agricultural produce from farms to markets. When a road accident occurs, perishable agricultural produce results easily in wastage, and when delayed, the same result may occur. The spoilt produce is either thrown away on the road or separated to be discarded once the farmer gets to the market. Figure 1 shows agricultural produce being transported in a city in Nigeria.
- Poor electricity or lack of rural electrification—the epileptic power supply and lack of rural electrification in some parts of developing countries with significant agricultural activities are contributing in no small measure to the generation of agricultural solid wastes. Stable electricity could have facilitated the cold storage of the harvested produce and thereby reduce spoilage and consequently agricultural solid wastes.
- Inadequate drying technique and storage facilities—spoilage of much agricultural produce could be prevented with adequate drying techniques. If farmers have access to adequate drying techniques or moisture monitor, it would have gone a long way in militating against food spoilage and agricultural solid waste, thereby enhancing food security and reducing the impact of agricultural solid waste on human health and the environment. Many of the farmers depend largely on the unpredictable solar system to dry their products before they are stored, as well as rely on the conventional method of moisture monitoring which is neither effective nor accurate. Inadequate monitoring of moisture content in grain before storage has been reported to result in aflatoxin infestation. Aflatoxin is produced by Aspergillus flavus. Aflatoxin infestation is both a cause and a product of food spoilage and its contamination of food and livestock feed can lead to significant annual crop losses globally.
- It has been estimated that about 10% of global crop harvest is destroyed by filamentous fungi through contamination of food and feed with mycotoxins. Aflatoxins have been reported to produce liver carcinogens, impair human health in developing countries, and result in huge economic losses, in the U.S. corn alone amounting to about $280 million annually. The economic losses could be as high as 1 billion dollars if other crop-infestation such as cotton, peanuts, and tree nuts are included. Aflatoxins B1 and B2 which cause preharvest and postharvest crop infestation are produced by Aspergillus flavus.
- Food spoilage is another important source or cause of agricultural solid wastes. It has been estimated that about 40% of food is wasted in the US alone annually. This waste has been estimated to cost about 162 billion dollars Natural Resources Defense Council. Pest and insect infestation may also increase wastage owing to spoilage.
- Kitchen-generated agricultural solid wastes: in most cases, the result of agricultural activities is family consumption. Usually, the consumption of agricultural produce at the family level is not without the production of agricultural solid wastes. Some of these wastes are generated out of necessity. For example, orange peels and banana peels are discarded as agricultural solid wastes in many homes. However, agricultural solid wastes may also be generated unintentionally, arising from food spoilage. Kitchen-generated agricultural solid wastes become significant when restaurants are included as kitchens (commercial kitchens). Of all the kitchen wastes considered in cities in China, agricultural solid wastes (food wastes) constitute between 88 and 94%. Figure 2, Tables 1 and 2 respectively show home-generated agricultural solid wastes, the composition of kitchen wastes, and nutritional characteristics of kitchen wastes in selected cities in China.
- Influence of agricultural solid waste on human health and environment
The influence of agricultural production on human, health, changes in climate, animal health, and the environment cannot be over-emphasized. For example, it has been suggested the greenhouse gas emissions need to be reduced drastically to avert the impending threat on the planet, earth, and its inhabitants to avert temperature rise by at least an average rise of 35.6°F. Animal production has been indicted to produce about 37 and 65% of global methane and nitrous oxide emissions respectively, which are more potent than carbon dioxide. Indiscriminate burning of agricultural solid wastes produces climate-relevant emissions. Improper handling of agricultural solid wastes influence change in climate and change in climate in turn hampers food production. The effects of indiscriminate disposal of agricultural solid wastes cannot be overemphasized. Some of the effects are outlined below:
- Health and environmental implication
- Food security
- Flood: One major cause of flood has been the blockage of waterways. Waterways are blocked primarily when human beings build on waterways or when the canals or waterways are blocked by solid wastes. In an agricultural environment, the indiscriminate dumping of agricultural solid wastes can result in blockage of waterways which when that happens will result in floods which may result in losses of lives and properties.
- Health and environmental implication—arising from indiscriminate burning of generated wastes. Indiscriminate dumping and burning of agricultural solid waste have resulted in pollution, a threat to human lives as well as other environmental problems, calling for global attention, although these wastes can be recycled to improve soil fertility, being rich in nutrient required for sustainable agricultural production. Figure 3 shows the agricultural solid wastes being dumped in open space.
- Food security and agricultural solid wastes: Continuous human population growth has been linked with increased agricultural activities which consequently results in increased generation of agricultural solid wastes. There are currently about 7.5 billion people around the globe and a significant portion of this population still do not have enough food to eat.
One of the important 17 Global Sustainable Goals is to end hunger, achieve food security and improve nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture by 2030. Unfortunately, 10 years ahead of the deadline for this goal, there are still about 821 hungry people across the globe.
- It has been argued that the main problem of food insecurity is not that we are not producing enough food, but agricultural solid wastes, mainly food wastage is responsible.
Africa and Asia have been noted as the fast-growing population in the world, incidentally, these are the regions with the most food-insecure people and inefficient waste management. It has been estimated that one-third of the food we produce annually is lost or wasted, costing about one trillion US dollars annually.
Wastage occurs mostly in developing countries during the production and supply chain while it occurs mainly in developed countries on the plate. Agricultural solid wastes can be recycled as non-conventional feed ingredients to enhance food security by enhancing animal protein production.
Home-generated agricultural solid wastes table.
Composition of kitchen wastes in Chinese cities (unit: %).
|Cities||Moisture||Volatile solid||Crude protein||Ether extract||Oil||Salinity|
Nutritional characteristics of kitchen wastes in Chinese cities (unit: %).
Dumping of agricultural solid wastes at the public
The agricultural waste consists of all of the leftover materials from agricultural production, such as crops, compost, straw, and manure. Agriculture also produces all kinds of liquid waste — liquid from all kinds of agriculture operations. These liquid wastes are called agrotoxins and are generally dumped in ditches or landfills and eventually become soil contaminants.
Their production process and their route through the soil do not ensure that they are harmless, resulting in agricultural waste becoming one of the main causes of agricultural pollution in our land, air, and water. Most of the agrotoxins are persistent, meaning that they stick around in soil and water for long periods of time. Organic waste is the waste from organic farming.
The organic wastes that are produced by most organic farming systems are composed of residuals from harvesting vegetables, storing compost and fertilizers, harvesting pine needles, and fertilizing livestock. Organic farming creates a huge amount of organic waste, so organic waste management is essential for organic farms.
Even though the amount of organic waste organic farms produce is huge, organic waste management is not simple, especially since organic farms usually rely on landfills or landfill waste management. Fortunately, c can manage organic waste to ensure its removal from agricultural land.