Aerated or turned windrow composting is suited for large volumes such as that generated by entire communities and collected by local governments, and high volume food-processing businesses (e.g., restaurants, cafeterias, packing plants). It will yield significant amounts of compost, which might require assistanceto market the end-product.
Windrow composting is the production of compost by piling organic matter or biodegradable waste, such as animal manure and crop residues, in long rows (windrows). This method is suited to producing large volumes of compost. These rows are generally turned to improve porosity and oxygen content, mix in or remove moisture of the pile.
For small- to moderate-scale operations, turning can be accomplished with a front-end loader or a bucket loader on a tractor. The loader lifts the materials from the wind-row and spills them down again, mixing the materials and reforming the mixture into a loose windrow. The loader can exchange material from the bottom of the wind-row with material on the top by forming a new wind-row next to the old one. In order to minimize compaction, this needs to be done without driving onto the wind-row. Wind-rows turned with a bucket loader are often constructed in closely spaced pairs and then combined after the wind-rows shrink in size. Where additional mixing of the materials isdesired, a loader can be used in combination with a manure spreader.