Joshua Mikesell utilized microBIOMETER® in a University of Michigan Intern Student Program last fall for his 501(c)3 compost business Happy Coast.The goal of his compost business is to seek out organic waste products and develop ways to reduce and recycle these materials. In preparation for the study, Joshua created multiple controlled scenarios to test biomass in certain situations and in several types of compost.
For the project, they sorted through food waste obtained from local businesses and developed a process and ingredient list to produce their own organic fertilizer. microBIOMETER® was used to perform the initial tests. Then after their pellet applications was used again to determine effectiveness.
The University of Michigan was so impressed with Joshua’s study they now want to send him as many students as possible to continue this work.
Click here to read the entire report as well as view all the microBIOMETER® data collected.
Ben Rodman is a vermicomposter with a love for all things biology and horticulture. His vermicomposting operation, Lyons Worm Works, has grown from simply diverting and reclaiming their household organic wastes into a small-scale but growing community effort.
Combined with all the spent substrate from their gourmet mushroom cultivation and gardening and brewing waste, Lyons Worm Works creates high-quality, microbially dense and diverse living vermicast for regional consumers. For Ben, providing quality vermicast to customers means having objective measurements of its quality for multiple reasons: integrity and trust, quality assurance, marketing, and constant experimentation to improve his product and process.
“Experimentation and real data has always been important to me; bridging my idealism with the real world we live in and grow our food and medicine in. microBIOMETER® is giving me fast, quantitative data to assess important considerations like feedstock quality, evaluating the impacts of process changes, durability and storage for finished product, and for fine-tuning my compost tea kit recipes so customers can make high-quality aerated teas at home. Having a fast, accurate and objective way to assess my products provides me with the data needed to make informed decisions. It gives my customers and I confidence that my products are going to help them meet their goals. What a great product for the small producer like me, for whom a home lab isn’t practical and routine commercial lab testing is prohibitively costly!”