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Substitution of fertiliser with poultry manure: Is this economically viable?



Rapid expansion of the KwaZulu-Natal poultry industry has resulted in poultry manure and litter production that in certain areas exceeds the potential for use in crop production. If land application exceeds crop requirements, manure production may result in environmental damage. In this study, potential manure surpluses in intensive poultry producing KwaZulu-Natal areas were quantified. The costs of transferring such surpluses to manure-deficient areas were compared with the economic value of poultry manure as fertiliser. Estimates of potential arable land and pasture for spreading manure took both dairy and feedlot manure production into account. Use of manure surpluses by transfer was found to be economically viable. Public policy actions are needed, however, to promote such transfer.

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