Demo workshop on recovered nutrients in fertilizer for use on the farm


On September 15, 2020, ILVO organized a national workshop in Merelbeke, Belgium, focusing on the use of recovered nutrients in fertilisers on the farm. UGent and VLACO participated as partners for knowledge exchange.

Ilvo welcomed 36 participants on the demo workshop on the use of recovered nutrient on the farm. Because of the Covid-19 measures, participants were divided in small fixed groups. At the first stop, the Nutriman project was presented. Participants got to know how products and technologies on nutrient recovery were selected, how the Nutriman farmer platform works and what information is available. At the second stop, UGent presented the ammonium nitrate recovered by the Detricon process (P295 and T296). On the third stop, participants could visit the ILVO demo trial on phosphorus efficiency of products with recovered phosphorus. They could evaluate the growth and condition of grass growing on low P soil mixed with several products. Eight movies on Nutriman products and technologies were shown at stop 4. On the last stop, Vlaco vzw provided practical information on compost and digestate use for the farmers. The participants went home with a lot of information on infofiches, practice abstracts and training material.

Vlaco provided a presentation at ILVO’s trial site (15/9/’20) about existing  types of digestate and compost, their certification, fertilising and soil improving characteristics as well as how to use these products. The central question ‘why to choose compost and digestate for farmland use?’ was approached through the importance of closing the organic cycle and the ability of composts and digestates to provide organic carbon to the soils. As such they contribute greatly – more than fertilisation with mere slurries and artificial fertilisers – to a longer term soil fertility.

With a low or diminishing soil organic content-levels and with the backdrop of increasing intrest in nutrient and carbon recuperation (e.g. Fertiliser Regulation) Vlaco was keen on highlighting some of the products of its members. This fits within the NUTRIMAN scope of reducing the knowledge gap between producers and users of recuperated nitrogen and phosphorus. The formula of several short stops (demo, video, ppt,..) each time offerting time for Q&A was considered a dynamic, highly informative and meaningful event.


UGent made a presentation on the Detricon stripping & scrubbing technology (ID296) and the end-product ammonium nitrate solution (ID295). The Detricon technology recovers nitrogen from pig manure by combining anaerobic digestion and stripping & scrubbing process. The produced liquid ammonium nitrate is odourless and colourless and suitable for replacing mineral fertilizer in agriculture. This technology and product together serves as an example of circular economy. UGent also presented the results from field trials on maize and spinich with the ammonium nitrate product. With the support of various training materials (ppt, infosheet, video, demo) as well as the active Q&A section, this event was considered informative and meaningful which fits in the NUTRIMAN scope of reducing the knowledge gap between producers and users of recovered nitrogen and phosphorus.