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SAFI Organics

Using unwanted rice chaff to produce organic fertilizer

In the last few decades, farmers around the world have grown dependent on synthetic fertilizers. In the short term, they can have a huge impact on productivity, but they gradually deplete soils of natural microorganisms and nutrients, and leach nitrogen into waterways. In addition, they are carbon intensive to produce and can be very expensive for farmers in developing countries.

In Kenya, SAFI Organics have come up with a method of transforming agricultural waste from local rice farms into an affordable, organic fertilizer. Using machinery developed in conjunction with MIT, SAFI convert unwanted rice chaff into organic fertilizer in under 8 hours. This fertilizer increases crop yields by up to 30%, reduces soil acidity and also increases water retention in the soil.

They are now developing the business to move into areas such as soil testing, where they survey the land in order to tailor their fertilizer for the specific requirements of each farmer. 

Decentralising fertilizer production reduces costs for local farmers, unlocking more opportunities for smallholder farmers in rural locations, as well as improving the quality of the soil and eliminating the greenhouse gases associated with synthetic fertilizer production.

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