BIOUREA project concentrates on the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland

  • Karoliina
  • Karoliina's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I work as a Develoment Finance Manager at FELM, a Finnish NGO working on development aid projects. My backround is very much in the WASH sector, I worked in the Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland promoting dry toilet technologies, ecological sanitation and nutrient recycling.
  • Posts: 25
  • Karma: 3
  • Likes received: 11

BIOUREA project concentrates on the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland

The Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland together with the Tampere University of Applied Sciences and the Finnish Environment Institute have been implementing a never-done-before project in Finland this year. The BIOUREA – Innovative fertilizer product in closed nutrient cycle implementation 2015-2016 project concentrates on the reuse of urine and dry toilet compost as fertilizers. Even though we have quite a lot of information about this issue at hand, we have never piloted the use of urine in large scale together with farmers here in Finland. This project has been funded by the Ministry of Environment the aim of the programme is to promote the recycling of nutrients and to improve the status of the Archipelago Sea.

The project started at the beginning of this year and we have two partner farmers in the project. The aim of the project is to produce up-to-date information about the use of urine in Finland and to enable the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland in the future. At the same time we want to find out the precondition for large scale urine use in farming, what works and doesn’t work from the farmer’s perspective (collection, transport, storage and spreading.

At the moment the use of urine is only allowed in private land but as it has no official fertilizer status, it cannot be sold or given to an outside party for use. To gain official fertilizer status admitted by Evira, the Finnish Food safety Authority, a set of tests concerning safety and nutrient levels must be conducted. As part of the project, the nutrient levels and safety related tests were carried out in an accredited laboratory. As the urine was partly gathered from festivals, the amount of N (2,8g/l) and P (174mg/l) were quite low. No E-coli or Salmonella was found. We also tested a set of pharmaceuticals from the urine as this has become a public concern when talking about the fertilizer use of urine. We have also tested the quality of farmland quality and taken samples for further analysis.

The actual fertilizer use pilots were implemented this May-June in our farmers fields situated in Kangasala and Iittala in Finland. The field areas were divided in three different sections for study purposes. The sections are no-fertilizer, urine and regular fertilizer used by the farmer (in this case manure and NPK). In Kangasala farm the urine was spead with a spreading machine and in Iittala manually.

Now we are waiting for the crops to mature and we are following the growth very carefully every other week in both of our farms. We will be releasing a final report (Finnish) and final results (also in English) at the end of the project. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions about this, please do not hesitate to be in contact! We would also love to hear more about your experiences in this field. Have you done similar projects?

For more information and contact please visit: www.huussi.net/en/activities/on-going-projects/biourea-3/

Karoliina Tuukkanen
Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The following user(s) like this post: KaiMikkel, pigneguy
You need to login to reply
  • canaday
  • canaday's Avatar
  • A biologist working toward sustainability
  • Posts: 366
  • Karma: 18
  • Likes received: 142

Re: BIOUREA project concentrates on the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland

Hi Karolina,

Congratulations on this important project.

One suggestion: I think it would be important to try different concentrations and frequencies of urine application.

Please let us know how things go.

Best wishes,
Chris Canaday

Conservation Biologist and EcoSan Promoter
Omaere Ethnobotanical Park
Puyo, Pastaza, Ecuador, South America
inodoroseco.blogspot.com
You need to login to reply
  • DavidAlan
  • DavidAlan's Avatar
  • David Crosweller
  • Posts: 91
  • Karma: 6
  • Likes received: 36

Re: BIOUREA project concentrates on the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland

Hello.

We aren't really a research organisation, but happened upon a grant that enabled us to test growing aubergines with, among other mixes, urine. It's no good asking me lots of complicated, technical questions, as I won't know the answer. I can likely get them for you. If you have questions email me directly.

Here's the report. David

This message has an attachment file.
Please log in or register to see it.

The following user(s) like this post: bowenarrow
You need to login to reply
  • Karoliina
  • Karoliina's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I work as a Develoment Finance Manager at FELM, a Finnish NGO working on development aid projects. My backround is very much in the WASH sector, I worked in the Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland promoting dry toilet technologies, ecological sanitation and nutrient recycling.
  • Posts: 25
  • Karma: 3
  • Likes received: 11

Re: BIOUREA project concentrates on the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland

Dear David! many thanks for your input, I will have a look at your report asap and I will contact you directly if I have any suggestions!
You need to login to reply
  • Karoliina
  • Karoliina's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I work as a Develoment Finance Manager at FELM, a Finnish NGO working on development aid projects. My backround is very much in the WASH sector, I worked in the Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland promoting dry toilet technologies, ecological sanitation and nutrient recycling.
  • Posts: 25
  • Karma: 3
  • Likes received: 11

Re: BIOUREA project concentrates on the use of urine as fertilizer in Finland

Dear Chris!

Warm thanks for your comment! This project concentrates maninly on how to use urine as a fertilizer from the farmers point of wiew, so everything has to be done acording to what the farmers are willing/able/have time to do. We wanted to test specifically how well urine is suited for the commercial agricultural use in Finland and weather the use of urine is as easy to the farmer as using chemical fertilizers. There are already quite a lot of interesting outcomes from the project and we have had to make some allowances in the practices to make it feasible for the farmers (such as applying the urine only once vs. the best practice, which would be applying the urine in at least two separate occasions).

I do agree with you that different concentrations / frequencies do affect the growth, depending on the cultivated plant, but Tampere University of Applied Sciences, among other actors, has done quite a lot of studies about this already. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any further questiosn, it's always very useful to get an outsiders feedback!!
The following user(s) like this post: canaday
You need to login to reply
Share this thread:
Recently active users. Who else has been active?
Time to create page: 1.049 seconds