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ACE Farm

Chicken Farm Creates Composting Business

Fabric covered building covers 55' by 290' composting platform

 

Location: New York
Building Size: 55' wide by 29' long Fabric Covered Building
Application: Agricultural, Composting

 

The fabric building, utilized for chicken farm composting, was designed to create as much natural ventilation as possible. Thompson designed & installed the building to have a 3" low-level air intake along the base of the curb foundation to create a natural air circulation that would exhaust condensation through a 10" center ridge vent.  "Compost piles create lots of heat, creating a consistent natural airflow provides a comfortable environment to work in," says Thompson.

 

ACE Farm, a family owned chicken farm in New York State, has been in existence for more than seven decades. Their most recent expansion with a fabric building enabled them to eliminate a problem and create an additional revenue generating business.

The challenge was handling the daily droppings of 200,000 chickens. ACE Farm had reached the maximum  levels of soil nutrients and could no longer  spread compost chicken manure on the family farm. Tyler Etzel, ACE Farm owner, had to find alternate means to safely dispose compost product. "We began to sell our chicken manure to a company who sold it as soil amendments for fertilizer. When we worked the numbers and did some research, we realized that there was an opportunity for us to manufacture soil that can be sold to a variety of end users," says Etzel.
 
ACE Farm needed a building to mix and house compost product in. "Consistency is key. We mix leaves into our chicken manure, which creates an excellent base product. Chicken manure soaks up huge amounts of water, we needed a controlled environment to eliminate excessive moisture exposure and unwanted debris," says Etzel.
 
Etzel purchased a 55'W x 290'L arch design, fabric building.  "At first I was looking  for a greenhouse, but  after  viewing  a few neighboring fabric  buildings, the quality and durability of a fabric building made more sense to me," says Etzel. ''The fabric building offered a great  clear-span environment to work in and the flexibility to create a well ventilated environment."

 "Fabric buildings are ideal for compost applications, the fabric is not affected by the corrosive environment and the galvanized steel tubing has an additional corrosion  barrier."

 

The fabric building now houses a Scat Turner that breaks up, mixes and aerates the compost product. "Excessive moisture and unwanted debris are no longer issues," says Etzel. "The building helps us to legitimize our composting business."

 

The building cover 270' windrow piles that are 12' wide by 5' high

 

Fabric Covered Building  Highlights

 

10 inch center ridge vent to allow hot moist air escape

 

  • A 3 inch low level air intake was constructed to induce natural air circulation to exhaust condensation through the 10 inch center ridge vent

 

  • The fabric is not affected by the compost environment and is a non-conductor of heat which provides a cooler work environment

 

Installation

 

Installation was completed in 5 days

 

A Scat Turner breaks up, mixes and aerates the 2 compost windrow piles

 

The 3 inch low-level intake helps to create natural air circulation

 

Condensation is exhausted through the center ridge vent

 

 

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