For years sugar industries faced a major challenge in proper utilization of the wastes generated in the process of sugar manufacturing in their plant. The sugarcane bagasse made its way to paper industries, press mud continued to be a major problem. 1000 MT of crushed canes produced 3 MT of press mud. Considering its nutritive value, some sugar mills started to distribute press mud among the sugarcane growers to use it as manures. But undecomposed press mud ,due to its high lignite and hemicellulose content was hard to decompose by the regular micro-organisms present in soil and as a result there was a risk of formation of hard pans by repeated use of raw press mud in soils.
It is an open air solid state fermentation technology where press mud are laid in open tanks and turned upside down by aero-tiller thrice a day. By this process, it generally takes 45 days to complete decomposition process. Care should be taken to control temperature because partially decompose materials produce enormous heat.
Some sugar mills also had a distillery unit, which also had to incur a huge cost to release its liquid waste known as spent wash. This spent wash is actually rich in potash. So, technologists recommended to add this spent wash to press mud manure to increase its nutritive value and at the same time to solve the problem of distillery units.
Apart from that, this type of manure also contains some amount of sulfur because sulfur is used in the process of extraction of sugar!.
The press mud organic manure is free of inorganic elements present in the traditional form of organic manures commonly used by the farming community in the country. It is widely accepted and has given a very good result to all crops if applied at an early stage while land preparation. It increases the porosity of the soil and also helps the crop for uptake of chemical fertilizers applied in the form of NPK fertilizers.