At Kreider Farms we take our commitment to the environment, sustainability and regenerative farming very seriously. That’s why we’re invested in continuing to innovate our practices and invest in technology that will improve waste management, protect precious water resources, and generate clean energy. We’ve made being good stewards of the land an essential part of our mission.
At Kreider Farms, we have adapted several practices to reuse and recycle both our cow and chicken manure into high quality and nutrient-rich fertilizer for use across our farm.
On the dairy side, we treat our liquid by-products and reuse them as bio-available fertilizer, which allows the crops to access the nutrients more readily and results in fewer treatments and less potential runoff into our Chesapeake Bay watershed.
We also recycle our solid dairy by-products as renewable cow bedding. With 30,000 pounds of pressure, we utilize a screw press to squeeze out every last drop of moisture before treating with lime to kill any leftover bacteria. What we’re left with is a high-quality, dry, fluffy and solid bedding that the cow’s enjoy.
On the poultry side, we have daily manure removal belt systems with ventilation which allows the chicken manure to dry and retain nutrients while preventing the production of ammonia and greenhouse gasses. This manure is delivered to farms throughout the Northeastern United States for use as a nutrient-rich and low cost fertilizer.
Our recycled chicken and cow manure is also available for consumer retail in a home gardening manure blend or potting mix for all your at-home gardening needs.
Kreider Farms is working very hard to be good upstream neighbors to our beautiful Chesapeake Bay through our minimally evasive farming practices and water treatment facilities.
We employ no-till farming (also called zero tillage or direct drilling), which is a way of growing crops or pastures from year to year without disturbing the soil through tillage. No-till is an agricultural technique which increases the amount of water that infiltrates into the soil and increases organic matter retention and cycling of nutrients in the soil. In many agricultural regions it can reduce or eliminate soil erosion. It increases the amount and variety of life in and on the soil, including disease-causing organisms and disease-suppression organisms.
Forgoing the traditional approach of treatment at municipal wastewater and storm water facilities, Kreider Farms’ Bion micro-aerobic digestion technology provides on-site nutrient treatment at the livestock farm before waste ever has an opportunity to flow into local streams and watersheds. The result is a dramatic reduction in nitrogen and phosphorus from animal waste that otherwise would enter the Chesapeake Bay.
In order to further protect the water supply, our dairy farm features a system of riparian buffers. A riparian buffer is a vegetated area near a stream (a buffer strip) which helps shade and partially protect the stream from the impact of adjacent land uses. It plays a key role in increasing water quality in associated streams, rivers, and lakes, thus providing environmental benefits.
Over the past decade, Kreider Farms has been committed to generating clean, renewable energy and investing in resources and technologies that can help us to achieve our goals.
Today, we have over 12,000 solar panels lining the roofs of our state-of-the-art chicken houses. These panels generate approximately 3.5 million kilowatts of clean, renewable energy each year, which is enough electricity to power 300 local homes for a year! Since their installation, the total energy generated by our solar panels is equal to:
Kreider Farms is also 100% non-landfill, with all of our processing waste going into energy. In 2019, our waste generated 282,042 kilowatt hours of renewable energy at the Bainbridge waste-to-energy facility. This was an offset of 470 ton of carbon emissions had it been landfilled!
Farm to Fork
Kreider Farms is still truly a farm-to-fork company, dedicated to local agricultural and land preservation practices. Our over 3,000 acres of local farmland in Lancaster County and surrounding areas is preserved by us, ensuring that our land will remain undeveloped and allow for continued farm use and wildlife habitats.
After over 85 years, we still grow our own feed for our dairy herd using crop rotation practices which preserve soil nutrients but also allow us to adapt our feed mixture based on the needs of the herd. Today, we grow a rotation of rye, triticale, barley, corn and alfalfa.
Our close proximity to markets like Washington, Philadelphia and New York, allows us to provide fresher products to retailers with reduced fossil fuel consumption during distribution.