A major challenge in agricultural production systems is the maximization of resources used to promote the development of crops with a minimum of environmental impact. In this sense, the use of fertilizers of animal origin has great potential to promote the improvement of soil properties. In southern Brazil, swine manure (SM) is widely used in agricultural areas, allowing nutrient cycling within pig units and reducing costs for chemical fertilizers. Much of this manure is applied in liquid form (PS), but other strategies are often used, such as PS compost and swine bedding (DL). The use of these SMs improves the chemical, biological, and physical attributes of the soil, contributing to increased fertility and productivity of crops. However, prolonged use or applications with high doses of SM can result in the accumulation of metals and phosphorus in soils, representing a risk of contamination of soils and surface water resources, mainly due to losses by runoff, and subsurface, by leaching. Therefore, the adoption of criteria and the rational use of PMs need to be adopted to avoid dangerous effects on the environment, such as plant toxicity and water contamination. The potentialities and risks of SM applications are discussed in this chapter.
Part of the book: Soil Contamination