PUNE: Growing organic wastes in cities, as well as rural areas, are a challenge for civic bodies around the world. While there is a lot of research to prevent organic and inorganic waste from entering landfills and water bodies, a student has researched on how organic waste can be a valuable resource for farmers.
Chaitali Kshirsagar, a first year student of bachelors of science (BSc) in Arts, Commerce, Science (ACS) College in Ahmednagar came up with a unique technique where she successfully converted organic waste into liquid fertiliser.
Kshirsagar secured the second position for presenting the research in national ‘Anweshan’ competition, an inter-university competition which gives a platform to students for bringing in innovative ideas for reforms in society.
“During my survey, I encountered a mountain of waste compost left untreated. When asked, the locals said no one was willing to utilise these composts because it was not composted well. This has been a case for many. Also, while composting many times some micro-nutrients that are useful for plants and crops get wasted, as composting is not done properly,” said Kshirsagar.
“Organic waste if composted finely can be very useful for farming. Therefore, I started working on transforming of organic waste to liquid fertiliser which can be used for vegetable farming like cabbage and lady finger,” she added.
Kshrisagar has designed a machine prototype which will convert the organic waste easily into liquid fertiliser. These machines can be installed at premises of hotel, restaurants, housing societies and canteen areas from where a large number of organic wastes are produced.
“Generally, organic waste composting takes at least two to three months, but this machine will enable fast composting within 15 days. Nevertheless, this method will help reduce 70 per cent of waste. From 1,000 kg of organic waste, over 60 per cent is converted to liquid form, which leaves less than 30 per cent of waste residue,” said Kshirsagar.
“This method will help reduce dependency of farmers on chemical fertilisers. As the liquid extract is generated from the waste which was once produced from the farmland,” said Principal of ACS College, Shankar Lawre who was also Kshirsagar’s research guide.