Chicken manure is a common ingredient in residential, commercial, and industrial fertilizer products due to its high nutrient content and widespread availability. In an unprocessed form, raw chicken manure can burn and damage plants, contains harmful pathogens to people and animals and is difficult to handle. Because using unprocessed manure as a fertilizer is not a viable commercial option, processes must be established to utilize heat to kill pathogens and then granulate manure into a useful, transportable, and sellable product. In granulated form, chicken manure based fertilizer offers several advantages over powdered based fertilizers such as decreased nutrient runoff, easier transportability and handling and more controlled spreading.
Chicken manure is not the easiest of materials to process into a safe, transportable, and sellable end-product. Because of its ~50% moisture content, a typical process for granulating chicken manure using pan type pelletizers would involve drying, grinding, mixing, pelletizing, followed by another drying stage. High shear mixers from Lancaster Products significantly reduce the steps needed to process the manure and the equipment needed. The Lancaster High Shear Counter Current Mixer can mix and granulate in a single machine and single process, without the initial drying or grinding. This is an improvement over the traditional 5 step process which is cut down to just 2 steps – mixing/granulating and drying – with fewer pieces of equipment. As is the case with most pelletizing processes, achieving granules with higher yields at specified size bands factor heavily in equipment selection. A Lancaster High Shear Mixer gives operators the ability to not only create high yields in narrow size bands but also to simply modify recipe speeds and times to produce different sized products from batch to batch with no alteration of inputs or equipment. The Engineers at Lancaster Products work closely with fertilizer manufactures to develop the perfect formula for pelletizing chicken manure into varying sizes depending on the application. Small prills for golf course greens can be processed in the same high shear mixer that also produces larger round granules for commercial farming applications.
Like many of the material processing opportunities presented to us, a need to manufacture a better end product and improve efficiencies sparked the search for a better process to turn chicken manure into fertilizer. The Lancaster High Shear Mixer is an incredibly versatile piece of equipment and can be used to mix, homogenize and pelletize a variety of materials. While the materials that we process in our mixers range from the exotic to the familiar, we approach all of the materials with the same proven scientific approach to solve problems and improve efficiencies.
Looking to enhance your fertilizer processing processes? Contact our engineers today to discuss how a high shear counter current mixer from Lancaster Products can solve your problem.