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Spent mushroom compost (SMC) – retrieved added value product closing loop in agricultural production
Published September 5, 2018
185-202

Worldwide edible mushroom production on agro-industrial residues comprises of more than 11 million tons of fresh mushrooms per year. For 1 kg of mushrooms there is 5 kg of spent mushroom compost (SMC). This enormous amount of waste results in disposal problems. However, SMC is a waste product of the mushroom industry, which contains mycelium an...d high levels of remnant nutrients such as organic substances (N, P, K). The spent mushroom compost is usually intended for utilization, but there are increasing numbers of experiments focusing on its reuse in agricultural and horticultural production. Recently, the increase of the global environmental consciousness and stringent legislation have focused research towards the application of sustainable and circular processes. Innovative and environmentally friendly systems of utilisation of waste streams have increased interest of the scientific community. Circular economy implies that agricultural waste will be the source for retrieving high value-added compounds. The goal of the present work was to carry out a bibliographic review of the different scenarios, regarding the exploitation of this low cost feedstock with huge potential for valorisation.

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Examination of compost maturity using reflectance
Published May 26, 2022
29-34

Composting is one of the most popular recycling processes for organic waste. Composting plays an important role in waste and by-product management and is becoming increasingly important in both sustainable energy management and circular economy. Composting transforms organic matter to produce a safe and stable by-product (compost) that can ...be applied to arable land in a similar way to fertilizer. Physical, chemical and biological methods can be used to monitor the process and to determine the maturity of the compost, as spectrometric/spectroscopic methods play an important role in the analysis of different environmental samples.

Our aim was to (1) non-destructively detect the effects of different additive ratios on the spectral properties of the composting process and the spectral data of different compost mixtures, (2) to find the wavelength ranges of the reflectance curve (inflection points) sensitive to compost maturity, (3) to determine the correlation between the inflection points and the chemical and physical parameters measured in compost by conventional methods.

The mixture of broiler and hen manure and zeolite was composted 62 days in windrow composting. In the composting experiment, the moisture content and temperature (°C) were measured every three days and compost samples were taken and in 10% destillated aquaeous suspension were measured the pH and electrical conductivity (mS cm-1). Compost samples dried to mass stability were spectrally analyzed in the wavelength range 400–1000 nm with AvaSpec 2048 spectrometer.

Based on the results, the reflectance of mature compost were smaller in the last days of composting than the reflectance values of day 0 samples, thus compost maturity can be detected spectral in the VIS-NIR wavelength range. For the tested compost prisms, the reflectance of each sampling day shows a constant slope, with a significant overlap of the reflectance curves up to 400–700 nm wavelength range, and there was a breakpoint in the 700–750 nm wavelength range which was proved by binary encoding.

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Deproteinized plant juice as part of circular economy: A short review and brief experimental data
Published December 1, 2020
23-26

As the population of the Earth is constantly growing it generates an unmet demand for protein, which is an urgent problem. The protein extraction process is a potential solution, which offers high-quality plant protein suitable for animal and human nutrition at a favorable price. The process used within our project produces green juice from... the green alfalfa biomass through pressing. After the coagulation of protein from this green juice, the by-product is called DPJ (Deproteinized Plant Juices) or brown juice. Our preliminary results match the international literature, namely that brown juice take up as much as 50% of the fresh biomass in weight. To utilize this by-product is a crucial part of the process to make it environmental-friendly and financially viable as well. The examined brown juice samples came from a small-scale experiment of alfalfa varieties carried out in the experimental farm at the University of Debrecen. According to our preliminary results, brown juice has high macro- and micronutrient values, furthermore, it has a potentially high amount of antioxidant compounds. The study highlights that brown juice is suitable as an ingredient in microbiological media, in plant nutrition as a supplementary solution, for feedstock and for preparing human food supplements or functional foods. The potential utilization of all biorefinery products makes it a very appropriate technology for today’s challenges.

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