The Ohio State University Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE) Ph.D. candidate Daisy D'Angelo recently received a $4,000 university scholarship from the Compost Research and Education Foundation (CREF) for her work to improve compost marketability.
The Compost Research and Education Foundation university scholarships aim to bring assistance to students interested in compost research and to spark interest in future careers in the composting industry. The scholarship also includes an invitation to present research findings at a US Composting Council Annual Conference during a CREF research session.
The scholarship-winning project focused on utilizing food waste compost found throughout the state of Ohio to show how their properties, including nutrient enrichment and drought resistance, can support farmers. The compost was tested on both sand-based soil and high clay-based soil to see if it had any effect on the properties of the compost. Daisy worked with FABE professor Fred Michel on this research.
"We're so grateful to have the opportunity to show how awesome compost can be in reducing fertilizer and water use," said Daisy.
As for the future implications of compost use, Daisy hopes that research like hers will improve confidence in compost usage in agriculture and get food waste out of landfills and cut down on excess water and fertilizer applications in farms today.
Daisy D’Angelo received her MS in Plant Pathology at The Ohio State University in 2014, and is currently pursuing a PhD in FABE with a focus on compost characterization and utilization. She is also a Horticultural Scientist in Growing Media at Scotts Miracle-Gro.