Livestock Mortality and Butcher Waste Composting: Rutgers Recommended Practices
Proper disposal of on-farm mortalities and butcher residuals is a challenge for New Jersey farmers. The ability to convert these losses and “wastes” to a nutrient rich resource and reuse them can help to improve and renew their soils. From a broader perspective, the ability
to compost butcher residuals will be an important component in rebuilding small scale meat processing infrastructure in New Jersey. Like the rest of the country, New Jersey has experienced a sharp decline in butcher and slaughter plants since the mid-20th century. The
consolidation of slaughtering plants has severely curtailed the ability of smaller scale livestock farmers to process their meat. New Jersey consumers are increasing their demand for locally raised meat in a way that uses less fossil fuel. They are also interested in buying meat from
farmers they know and are familiar with the methods used to raise and process their livestock. On-farm small scale slaughter facilities and mobile slaughter units provide farmers with the ability to process their animals and, and when under USDA inspection, bring their meat
to market. The trend to reverse the consolidation of US livestock production has many social benefits: promoting the viable use of farmland and open space, creating community connections between farmers and consumers and reducing energy inputs into raising, processing and
transporting our food to market.