Ammonia Bioremediation in Poultry Waste

Specially selected microbes treat poultry processing wastewater to reduce nitrogen and organic waste levels

Ammonia bioremediation prevents waste problems at poultry p[roducers.  Petrox DN organisms reduced ammonia-nitrogen  and BOD levels in the same wastewater reactor.  The organisms in Petrox removed 40% of the ammonia-nitrogen in 48 hours.  This reduction stabilized the concentrations in wastewater effluent to an acceptable level eliminating permit exceedances.

New Custom Blend Available for Denitrification

CL Solutions has provided Petrox DN for denitrification for many years.  Petrox DN is a freeze-dried consortium that requires hydration before application.  CL Solutions now provides a custom blend of microbes in a dry powdered form with denitrification capabilities. This dry blend makes for more convenient storage and use.  Additional organisms in the consortium can degrade ammonium and organics including petroleum hydrocarbons, fats, carbohydrates, proteins, starches and cellulose.  These benefits make the custom blend a powerful tool for bioremediation of liquid waste in fixed facility treatment or environmental applications.

Call CL Solutions for more infomation or a site evaluation at 513-284-5940.

Confidential Site with excess nitrate in ground water

Nitrogen is one of the elements required for microbial cell growth. Excess nitrate in ground water, however, can be harmful. Denitrification is the process by which select organisms can convert nitrate into nitrogen gas. Bacteria that mediate denitrification, utilize nitrate as a metabolic terminal electron acceptor under anaerobic conditions. While Petrox® normally metabolizes organic compounds using oxygen as an electron acceptor, the organisms in Petrox® DN can utilize the same metabolic pathway to remove excess nitrate from ground water under aerobic or anaerobic conditions.

Petrox® DN is a consortium of Pseudomonas putida, which are well known for their metabolic diversity. These naturally-occurring organisms are non-pathogenic and are manufactured under food-grade protocols. Petrox® DN contains a guaranteed cell count of 109 cfu/ml. The high population of denitrifying organisms accelerates the removal of nitrate and removes the guesswork from project management.

Laboratory Validation

A bench-scale treatability study demonstrated the high rate of denitrification by Petrox® DN. At a population of 107 cfu/mL, Petrox® DN removed nitrate at a rate of 17.1 mg/L/hr under anaerobic conditions.


Field Validation

Petrox® DN was applied to nitrate contamination in ground water two locations. In field application 1, after two monthly treatments, Petrox® DN reduced the nitrate concentration by 65%. In the second field application, after just one Petrox® DN application the bioremediation removed 50% of the nitrate in 56 days.

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Petrox® DN is provided freeze-dried for ease of use. Once hydrated Petrox® DN can be introduced into the ground water through injection points or well. Once in the aquifer a carbon source is added to support the population growth. Under favorable conditions the organisms will flourish with a high capacity to remove nitrate, until the nitrate is depleted. For additional information contact CL Solutions at 513-475-6625.

Bioaugmentation to Reduce Ammonia, Nitrate and Organics in Wastewater

Case Study: Improving Poultry Wastewater Treatment

Site Summary

Petrox DN® bioaugmentation was implemented at a poultry processing plant to deal with a recurring problem of excessive ammonia levels in wastewater discharge. Petrox ND® bioaugmentation reduced the organic carbon load in the wastewater and converted the ammonia to nitrogen gas. Within 48 hours of treatment the ammonia levels in the wastewater were reduced to acceptable levels and discharge limits were maintained.

Nature of the Problem

Wastewater treatment requires the treatment of a variable waste stream with limited control over the volume and concentration of the raw material and only moderate control over the operating conditions. The goals for organic wastes include the removal of organic pollutants, reducing the total organic load, reducing nutrient concentrations including nitrogen, and odor control. Removal of ammonia and nitrogen compounds are typically achieved by a two- step process of nitrification of the ammonia and denitrification of the nitrate. The autotrophs Nitrosomas sp. and Nitrobacter sp. are typically involved in these steps. As autotrophs these microbes use carbon dioxide instead of organic carbon to build cells, organic wastes are not treated by this process.

The Pseudomonas sp. in Petrox DN® oxidize the organic carbon wastes converting it to cell mass, carbon dioxide and water and generating stored cellular energy.  Simultaneously, the Pseudomonas sp. in Petrox DN® remove ammonia and nitrogen by utilizing these compounds as a nitrogen source for cell growth and electron acceptors during the consumption of the organic wastes. The benefit of Petrox DN® bioaugmentation is the removal of both the organic waste, nutrients and elimination of ammonia odors.

Pseudomonas sp. are also cold water tolerant, so Petrox DN® can be used year round under most under natural conditions.


The plant generates 0.85 million gallons of wastewater per day with ammonia levels of 80 to 120 ppm. The wastewater after primary treatment and equalization flows into a 7.5 million gallon anaerobic lagoon and subsequently four sequencing batch reactors (SBRs). At the end of the settling cycle, the supernate discharges to a receiving stream.

Bench-scale laboratory studies showed that nitrate could be removed at a rate of 17 mg/L/hr under aerobic conditions and at a rate of 12 mg/L under anaerobic conditions. TOC could be removed at a rate of 45 mg/L/hr. Petrox DN® bioaugmentation was initiated in the aeration basin and the SBRs.

After less than 48 hours the wastewater met and maintained the wastewater discharge limits.