Some International Practices on the Use of Distillery Spent Wash in Agriculture

Some International Practices on the Use of Distillery Spent Wash in Agriculture

By Dr. Yashpal Singh

For other topics related to the Distillery Sector and a review based on more than 350 publications  covering Indian Distillery Industry, Manufacturing Process, Composition of Effluents, Environmental Impacts, Treatment Technologies, Utilization of Spent Wash In Agriculture, Impact On Soil, Crops And Yield, Pre-Sown Land Application, Ferti-Irrigation, Bio Composting, Soil Reclamation, International Practices in The Utilization of Spent Wash in Agriculture, Major Provisions of The Environment, Forest and Pollution Control Laws in India, Environmental Performance Rating, Major Policy Interventions and The Views Of The Honorable NGT On Sustainable Technology Adoption see Singh Yashpal 2020, Distillery Spent Wash and Its Utilization in Agriculture. Publisher РThe Wealthy Waste School India. ISBN No. 978-93-5396-249-4. Pages 1 to 360 (Available at Amazon and Kindle Books)

Australia, Brazil, Mexico and some other countries have demonstrated some notable contributions towards the utilization of spent wash in Agriculture. In Australia spent wash is blended with additional crop nutrients and sold as manure. Spent wash has also been used to compost trash in the field. The fields are generally sprayed with spent wash to facilitate the accelerated composting. Aspirator guns used in Brazil draw spent wash from lorry tankers and spray spent wash to cover a radius of 200 feet. In Brazil, the application of vinasse and filter cake to sugarcane crops has reduced the consumption of fertilizers as composed to other crops and in other countries. The Sao Paulo Secretariat for Environment has developed a technical standard. It specifies permitted places, doses, protection of master channels and storage etc. There are mills that have applied vinasse to 70 percent of their crop areas.

In Mexico, a Ferti-irrigation programme was put in place in 1996 with a financial cost sharing of 35% federal Government funds, 15% state government funds and 50% beneficiary contribution. 87% of the farmers in the project area reported increased yields and 90% reported better use of irrigation water. The program also achieved water saving of 40% and an energy reduction of 32%. The Harvested area increased 18% and the yield by 30% giving an internal rate of return of 16% to the Farmers.

In Australia, the Agriculture and Resource Management Council of Australia and New Zealand and the Australian and New Zealand Environment and Conservation council have recommended the storage and use of liquid effluents to be subsequently used in land application with the solids to be used as compost. Land application has been prescribed to be one of the most efficient methods of recycling valuable water along with the effluents nutrient and organic components. Effluents have been advised to be applied at rates that do not cause the development of anaerobic conditions. The guidelines also prescribe a number of other safeguards including instruments that could be used to spray effluents. Low trajectory large droplet irrigation is preferred.

An efficient land application system can be assessed by evaluating whether the basic objectives of irrigating crops is being achieved, there is no polluted runoff, recommended levels of sustainable down ward environmental values is maintained and there is no physical, chemical or biological degradation of soils.

 Australia markets spent wash blended with nitrogen, sulphur and phosphorous as Bio dunder an organic fertilizer and also as Liquid one shot for application to sugarcane and other crops. A Polluting substance this way, has been turned into a saleable, import replacing product and improved the business position and community acceptance of the generator. Bio dunder has been accepted by cane farmers in Australia as a valuable Potassium rich fertilizer and 100% of the Bio dunder product at the Sarina Distillery is now recycled into this market.

In Romania, the application of vinasse to permanent grasslands at the rate of 4 to 7 t/ha in 1:5 water dilution increased yield by 50 to 81% over control. In Ireland, slops are concentrated and processed to form Pot Ale which can be used for agriculture use. Several major crops are being irrigated successfully with waste waters in India.

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