Newswise — Mar. 15, 2018 –  We all want assurance that the food we eat is safe. The Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) March 15 Soils Matter blog explains how regulations regarding manure use on agricultural fields keep our food safe and the soil healthy.

“Manure contains a lot of nutrients that can benefit the soils and the farmers’ crops,” says Jodie Reisner. Reisner is a conservation agronomist at USDA-NRCS. Manure is also widely available: one cow can generate 43-120 pounds of manure a day!

Growers use manure because it benefits soil health:

  • Manure benefits the living part of the soil called soil biology. It is a source of energy for soil life to grow, reproduce, and feed.
  • Manure helps the soil absorb rainfall for the crops.
  • Manure also provides nutrition to the plants as they grow.

But uncomposted manure can also contain disease-causing microbes such as E.coli and salmonella—and a dangerous, gut-wrenching experience for anyone who ingests them.  As a result, the FDA created standards around manure use to protect our food supply. This gives growers clear practices for safe food production.

Regulations on manure use for food safety provides consistent information to farmers who want to use manure, and safety to the consumer,” Reisner says.

To read the entire blog post, visit…-for-food-safety/.

Follow SSSA on Facebook at, Twitter at SSSA_Soils. SSSA has soils information on, for teachers at, and for students through 12th grade,

The Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) is a progressive international scientific society that fosters the transfer of knowledge and practices to sustain global soils. Based in Madison, WI, and founded in 1936, SSSA is the professional home for 6,000+ members and 1,000+ certified professionals dedicated to advancing the field of soil science. The Society provides information about soils in relation to crop production, environmental quality, ecosystem sustainability, bioremediation, waste management, recycling, and wise land use.

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