"Bay State Fertilizer is better than ever," MWRA's Executive Director Douglas B. MacDonald announced today. "That's because the new secondary treatment facilities now operating at Deer Island enrich the solids waste stream sent to the fertilizer facility. Better fertilizer is actually a side benefit from better wastewater treatment to protect Boston Harbor." MWRA manufactures Bay State Fertilizer from sewage sludge.
"There's one-third more nitrogen content in our Bay State Fertilizer this year," said MWRA Marketing Manager Amy Barad. "More nutrients are being removed from the wastewater at the Deer Island plant, so more nutrients are found in Bay State Fertilizer." The sludge is shipped from Deer Island to MWRA's Fore River sludge- to-fertilizer facility. There, it is de-watered and baked at high temperatures in large rotary kilns to kill bacteria and shape the material into small pellets.
MWRA tracks nutrient levels as part of its extensive product testing and quality assurance program for Bay State Fertilizer. The testing program also protects against the presence of any toxic contaminants so that customers will know the product meets compliance with all federal and state regulations. Bay State Fertilizer is considered "exceptional quality" under U.S. E.P.A. standards. Customers can obtain complete information on the fertilizer testing program, its results and applicable regulations, at www.mwra.com.
Bay State Fertilizer has found a niche in the local market with landscape professionals and homeowners who want a slow release, non-burning fertilizer that is rich in organic matter and micronutrients.The fertilizer is recommended for use on lawns and flower and vegetable gardens. Local customers include golf courses, landscapers, garden centers and hardware stores. Last year, customers purchased approximately 66 tons of Bay State Fertilizer.
MWRA also donates the product free to the 43 communities that send sewage to Deer Island. Communities use the product on parks, ball fields, landscaping and other local projects. The Metropolitan District Commission uses Bay State Fertilizer on the Esplanade, the Ponkapoag Golf Course in Canton and many other of its parks and recreational facilities.
Most fertilizer from the MWRA plant, however, is shipped for use in out-of-state commercial agriculture, mostly in Florida, Georgia, Alabama and North Carolina.
Bay State Fertilizer can be purchased at Atlas True Value Hardware in West Roxbury, Ashmont Discount in Braintree, Hillside Garden Supply in Belmont, Agway in Plymouth, Kennedy's Country Garden in Scituate, Flowerland Garden Center in Kingston, Nunan's Florist and Greenhouse in Georgetown, Harbor Garden Center and The Greenery in Salisbury, Bay State Pet and Garden in Taunton, Pereira Grain and Supply in Fall River, The Green Spot Garden Store in South Yarmouth and Tomasi Nurseries in Pembroke.