Our Double-Green Commodity

October 25, 2009 07:00 PM

*Extended comments highlighted in blue.

Louie Kazemier
Rickreall, Ore.
In mid-October, we finished up a marathon of manure hauling. For three months, we hauled manure to area grass-seed farmers and spread it on their fields.

Four trucks, 20 hours a day, 30 million gallons of sludge off the bottom of the lagoon. The sludge tests at 23 lb.
of nitrogen, 9.3 lb. phosphorus (P) and 9.9 lb. potassium (K) per thousand gallons.

We removed a lot of nutrients off the farm, while making $75,000, which is $15 per truckload. It's not every day that manure is worth more than milk!

When commercial fertilizers are at the prices they are now, we all have a marketable product. The area grass-seed farmers were very reluctant to try it. They were concerned about weeds, antibiotics, hormones, etc.

Three years ago, we spread some at our expense just to prove to them it works better than commercial fertilizers. Now we have farmers getting in line to purchase it next season. With our soil tests coming back high with P and K, we do not need to apply any more to our land. This turned out to be a "win-win” deal for area farmers and us, and it's the right thing to do for the environment.

Kazemier's September Prices  
Milk (3.5% bf, 3.3% prt): $11.85/cwt. (gross)
Cull cows: $44/cwt.
Springing heifers: $1,000/head
Top-quality alfalfa: $160/ton
Flaked corn: $180/ton

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