Farmstead is the land used for facilities and supporting infrastructure where farming, forestry, animal husbandry, and ranching activities are often initiated. It also includes land dedicated to the facilitation and production of high-intensity animal agriculture in a containment facility. NRCS can help landowners in a variety of ways on the farmstead:
- Determine the amount of nutrients produced on the farmstead and how to budget them to crop fields
- Determine the amount of energy used and possible options to reduce cost
- Determine the size and site requirements for a manure storage facility
- Install roofs to minimize livestock exposure to extreme cold and/or wet areas
- Meet local or state regulations
- Design a firm surface to store feed on
Animal feeding operations (AFOs) are agricultural operations where animals are kept and raised in confined situations. An AFO is a lot or facility where:
- Animals have been, are, or will be stabled or confined and fed or maintained for a total of 45 days or more in any 12-month period, and
- Crops, vegetation, forage growth, or post-harvest residues are not sustained in the normal growing season over any portion of the lot or facility.
Manure and wastewater from AFOs have the potential to contribute pollutants such as nitrogen and phosphorus, organic matter, sediments, pathogens, hormones, and antibiotics to the environment.
For detailed information on environmental considerations associated with animal agriculture published by the EPA, see:
- Risk Assessment Evaluation for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations
- Literature Review of Contaminants in Livestock and Poultry Manure and Implications for Water Quality
Common Minnesota Farmstead Conservation Practices
This video shows a confined livestock operation
Waste Storage Facility
This video shows a two-stage dairy manure storage pit in southeast Minnesota
This video shows a waste storage facility being utilized on a dairy operation
Waste Transfer and Separation
Link to Transfer Practice Overview
Link to Separation Practice Overview
This video shows a waste transfer system for a dairy operation
Roofs and Covers
Agrichemical Storage Facility
Energy Efficient Agricultural Operation
On-Farm Secondary Containment Facility
Animal Mortality Facility
This video illustrates how a poultry farmer used NRCS assistance to install an in-vessel composter (ecodrum)
Heavy Use Area Protection
This video shows concrete heavy use area protection being utilized around livestock tanks
Minnesota EPA Website
EPA's work in Minnesota is managed from our Region 5 office in Chicago, Illinois.
Minnesota Department of Agriculture Website
MDA's mission is to enhance Minnesotans' quality of life by ensuring the integrity of our food supply, the health of our environment, and the strength of our agricultural economy.
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Feedlot Website
MPCA rules govern the collection, transportation, storage, processing, and land application of animal manure and other livestock operation wastes.
USDA Animal Waste Management Version 2.4.1
AWM is a planning/design tool for waste storage structuresLearn More