Mike Johnson

Mike Johnson

Speaker | Heartland Sustainable Farms

Fair Oaks, IN | (219) 863-3913 | heartlandcompost@gmail.com

Mike, started in the family business of sewer construction and excavation. Mike moved onto start custom manure application for a number of large scale dairy and hog operations in NW Indiana. Now, annually custom applying 300 million gallons of manure Heartland Sustainable Farms is starting to compost this manure. In the effort to maximize the manure resource and be responsible.

Presentation Title: Lessons and Tips from Two Years of Site Planning and Development of a 20 Acre Composting Facility in NW Indiana

co-authors: Dan Perkins

Session: Managing Regulations and Regulators

Time: Wednesday, January 30, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Presentation Summary: Jasper County Indiana, located in NW Indiana is number one in the state for corn silage, alfalfa, and milk production. Over 30,000 milking head exist in the region. We are also located 1.5 hours from downtown Chicago. Plenty of raw ingredients exist for high quality compost making, but no one has attempted to bring all these elements together.

Heartland Sustainable Farms currently custom applies 300 million gallons of manure annually and in an effort to better service their customers and motivated by the value of being responsible and maximizing the manure is in year two of development of a 20 acre composting site. In 2016, we created 2- 100 windrows and used a self propelled turner to attempt compost on site of one of our clients. This made us realize the value of composting manure and initiated the vision for a 20 acre composting site.

We will discuss a brief history of the project development, some ways we are generating revenue before compost is even being made, are plans for compost revenue, and some of the hiccups and hang ups encountered and overcome during this large scale project.