The use of chicken as food is rising day today and as byproduct 8.5 billion tons, poultry feathers are produced worldwide, whereas India contributes about 350 million tons per annum. It is a waste product of poultry industries, are considered a potential high-quality protein supplement owing to their crude protein content of more than 85%. In the present study Alternaria tenuissima a keratinophilic fungus was used for feather degradation in submerged state fermentation and soil. Total Protein releases were studied in submerged state fermentation by A. tenuissima are 122µg/ml and 238µg/ml in 15 and 25 days respectively. Lysine, Methionine, Cysteine and Valine were found 15.8, 6.8, 20.2, 7.5 µg/ml in 25 days, respectively. Chicken feathers were mixed with soil and inoculated with spore suspension for degradation of complex keratin protein into simpler organic forms. A. tenuissima degraded feathers in soil and enhances nutritional value. Five-gram feathers in 250 g soil mixtures were found better growth enhancers and increased height. This work will reduce the solid waste generated in the form of feathers from the poultry industry, and convert it into a simpler organic form that can be used by plants.
Biofertilizer, Feather compost, Keratinophilic fungi, Keratinase
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