Anaerobic Digester Info

Project Summary




Ideal Family Farms, LLC

89 BP Finishing Lane

Beavertown, Pa. 17813



July 18th 2011



Ideal Family Farms, LLC is a partnership that is owner operated and is located in Snyder County, Pennsylvania. The farm  raises approximatly 30,000 nursery and finishing hogs annually. In March of 2008 the farm started looking at the possibly of installing a methane digester to reduce odor and produce Green energy. Another reason the farm started considering a digester was to be able to have more control over its most volatile input cost, being propane and electric used to heat and ventilate the barns.


 Prior to the digester the manure was drained directly from the barns into a large outside rubber lined holding lagoon, where it was stored until land application in the spring and fall. Prior to the digester construction in 2011, the farms electric use was approximately $35,000.00 and the propane usage was approximately $27,000.00.


The Plan

During our travels, we looked at digesters designed by different companies in Pennsylvania and New York. We decided to use a design from RCM International based in Berkley, California. RCM proposed a simple system that would fit well into our current management practices.




The project scope also consisted of building a utilty building to house a 180 kWh Generator. The heat from the engine will be used to heat the digester and also have a secondary loop that is intended to replace a large portion of propane usage in the nursery barn. New three phase service had to be installed for this project.




Ground was broken for the digester on October 25, 2010. The floor and walls of the digester were poured over the following 2 weeks. The utility building was constructed in the first week of December of 2011. The manure, gas and field piping were installed during the spring of 2011.


Construction followed the original plan very closely, with the exception of a delay to install the digester cover, due to cold weather setting in early. The cover was  not installed until April of 2011. The only unplanned costs were the need to install a rubber membrane liner under the digester which resulted in a change order in the amount of $5,500.00 and additional excavating cost due to hitting rock which resulted in $5,587.50 added cost for labor and equipment rental.


The digester was ready for gas production in of July, 2011.





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