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Inoculation of food waste with the thermo-tolerant lipolytic actinomycete Thermoactinomyces vulgaris A31 and maturity evaluation of the compost

Ke, Guang-Ruei, Lai, Chao-Ming, Liu, Ya-Yin, Yang, Shang-Shyng
Bioresource technology 2010 v.101 no.19 pp. 7424-7431
compost stability, germination, nitrogen content, phytotoxicity, catechol oxidase, compost maturity, Thermoactinomyces vulgaris, food residuals composts, lipids, carbon, urease, enzyme activity, food waste
The ability of the thermo-tolerant lipolytic actinomycete, Thermoactinomyces vulgaris A31, to efficiently decompose food waste into mature compost was studied. Using a range of chemical parameters (pH, total organic carbon content (TOC), total nitrogen content, C/N ratio), CO₂ evolution, enzymatic activities (dehydrogenase, polyphenol oxidase, urease) and germination assays, the composition, stability and maturity of the compost produced were assessed. Inoculation reduced crude fat and decreased the maturation time of the compost when compared with the control. TOC, C/N ratio, CO₂ evolution, and enzymatic activities (dehydrogenase, polyphenol oxidase, urease) decreased, pH, total nitrogen content, germination rate, and germination index increased. The dehydrogenase, polyphenol oxidase, and urease activities were shown to be useful indicators for the stability of food waste composts. Based on germination assays, the food waste composts were phytotoxicity free and matured after composting for 2months. Therefore, inoculation of food waste with the thermo-tolerant lipolytic actinomycete, T. vulgaris A31, presents as a feasible strategy to convert food wastes into mature compost efficiently.