Use of Fat, Oil and Grease Waste as an Agricultural Soil Conditioner
Wastewater from the food processing and food service industries can contain large quantities of fat, oil and grease (FOG). Most North American jurisdictions have bylaws limiting the concentration of oil and grease in sewer discharges. As municipal source control efforts become more aggressive, quantities of FOG waste requiring proper treatment/disposal will increase. At the same time access to traditional disposal methods, such as landfilling, is being restricted or becoming more costly.FOG waste is an ideal source of organic matter for soil conditioning and does not contain concentrations of metals or pathogenic organisms that would restrict application to land. Organic Resource Technologies Inc. (ORTI) has patented a process that exploits the unique properties of FOG waste, related to its high fat content, to improve fertilizer utilization in field agriculture. Using this technique, ORTI is able to manage spring and fall applications of FOG waste that result in improvements in the soil’s structural properties and in increases in soil organic matter content while maintaining crop yields.