On several farms an application of manure close to the ground has been implemented. It's not only a low-emission technique but also reduces the loss of nutrients and is therefore important to protect ground water from excessive nutrient input. In particular the application of manure by trailing shoe has proved successful. The manure is applied not onto the plants but onto the ground beneath. Thus the manure is applied very precisely, accurate dosed and near to the roots. This results in a higher rate of absorption of nutrients by the plants and less input of redundant nutrients into the ground water. Nearby surface waters are protected as well because the manure is not situated onto the plants and therefore not in the risk of being washed into a surface water.        

When applying, the farmer has to get used to the new technique which can be demonstrated by the customer service of the distributor. Regular use of the trialing shoe to get used to the handling.

To monitor the effect of the good practice, the water quality of ground water and surface water can e tested before and after using the trailing shoe.


Higher acceptance from local residents because of decreased unpleasant smell. Also he is already prepared for new requirements.


The investment for the new equipment and to learn how to work with this equipment

Lessons learned

- New equipment is expensive but an advantage when it comes to environmental protection
- Plant growth improved because of high disposability of nutrients
- Farmer's interest in technique helps to learn the handling

For further information on the costs and benefits of implementing this innovation on a beef farm please click on the below link for further information:



- Socio- economic resilience: Growth of feeding plants can improve due to higher disposability of nutrients
- Animal health and welfare
- Production efficiency and meat quality
- Environmental sustainability: Input of nutrients in ground and surface water is reduced, especially the input of nitrogen