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Need to Know

College Students Turn Waste into Sustainable Fertilizer for Rural Farmers

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The Pellet Group, a team of students from Ghana, Costa Rica, and the U.S., have turned waste into sustainable fertilizer for rural farmers. The goal of the project was to cut costs for farmers, restore soil health and ensure proper waste management.

To create the fertilizer, the team delivers recycling bins to homes, restaurants, marketplaces and farms. They collect the waste, dry it and convert it into organic fertilizer pellets.

The fertilizer is rich in nutrients and microorganisms that help the soil hold water. In addition, the pellets do not emit greenhouse gases.

The team believes the fertilizer will cut costs for local farmers by 35 percent. Testing of the pellets shows they can increase crop yields by as much as 50 percent, which will improve food access in local communities.  

The project was part of the 2020 Wege Prize, a competition among college students to develop affordable, environmentally-sustainable products or systems. The students won a $5,000 prize for developing the model.

Read the original story here.

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