|Posted by Tim Herron on May 6, 2014 at 7:45 AM|
Does the "manure" from earthworms have to meet the same
criteria as other
No. According to the NOSB Compost Task Force, earthworm castings are “finely divided organic material produced non-thermophilically due to interactions between aerobic microorganisms and earthworms, as organic material passes through the earthworm gut.” It makes no sense that earthworm castings would have to meet the same requirements as manure. Otherwise, it would be a violation of the regulation to have earthworms defecating in your soil less than 120 days prior to harvest of a crop for human consumption if the crop contacts the soil.
The manure requirements at §205.203.c.1 do not apply to earthworm castings, as the language specifically says “animal and plant materials include: 1) Raw animal manure, which must be composted.” The NOP definition of manure describes “excreta from livestock”, which does not apply to invertebrates such as earthworms that are either native or used in soil building processes, and not raised “for food or in the production of food.”