SwachaGraha Compost Connect

SwachaGraha Compost Connect (SGCC)  - Taking The Biomass Back To Soil is a first-of-its-kind experiment in India conceived and executed by Solid Waste Management Round Table (SWMRT), Bengaluru. The campaign works towards connecting urban compost producers from apartments and gated communities, with farmers in and around Bengaluru.  The aim is to send the precious organic waste coming out of urban kitchens and gardens back to the soil in the form of nutritious compost, thereby closing the loop in the most beautiful way possible.  

To make this happen, we invite only verified producers and buyers to join a WhatsApp group. Every Saturday, we have a sale going on where both parties interact and take things forward.

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90494 kgs of Compost - back to soil

To sign up for SGCC, kindly fill form

About Producer and Buyer

Terms & Conditions for Producer and Buyer

Success Stories

Overview

Bengaluru, despite its garbage woes, leads from the front with the highest number of bulk generators who recycle their food and garden waste into compost within their premises. At SWMRT, all of us had come across situations wherein several volunteers spearheading composting initiatives in their communities were seeking help to sell it due to lack of space to store the excess compost on their premises.

 

We were also aware of the worsening agrarian crisis all around and it was clear to us that one of the ways to revive the soil was to nourish it with nutrient-rich compost. However, lack of connect with the farming community kept posing roadblocks and the conversation used to usually end where it started.

 

Thankfully, with guidance from P Srinivas Vasu of Sustainable Organic Initiatives for Livelihood (SOIL) organisation, we were able to meet a bunch of farmers from around the city. Creating pathways where both entities connect through a WhatsApp group and making the best use of this tool to address each other’s demand and supply seemed like the best way forward to complete the circle. We did just that and that’s how SGCC took off the ground!

Objective

  • To reduce the chasm between the urban and the rural spheres by playing a catalytic role in enriching the degraded soil in farmlands through humus-rich biomass.

  • To strive to highlight the significance of individual contribution at every household and community level and its cumulative effect somewhere far away.

  • To encourage farmers to shun chemical fertilisers and pesticides and take to organic farming.
     

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Meet the Team

Waste segregation to composting, composting to organic farming/ gardening. SwachaGraha Compost Connect closes this loop beautifully and builds a virtuous cycle by taking the compost produced by communities in Bengaluru to farmers inside and outside its boundaries. 

Savita Hiremath, Member SWMRT

Lead Campaigner

I am a soil activist. My focus is on reviving soil health through 4 Ms: Microbes, Moisture (soil), Mulch and Matter (organic). By taking the biomass (compost) back to where it belongs, SGCC campaign is working towards rebuilding soil health and addressing the need of the hour.

 

P. Srinivas Vasu, Founder SOIL

Campaigner

A scientist by training, I firmly believe that a combination of research and collaboration will bring sustainable solutions to the challenges of urban solid waste management. As a member of the Bangalore Apartments Federation, I have successfully engaged with communities to help them adopt simple and cost-effective practices in this area.

Sowmya Raghavan, Member BAF

Campaigner

Compost Producers
 

Compost producers are mainly apartments and gated communities with excess compost to sell. The size varies anything from 60 homes to 1400+ homes. The sale starts at a minimum of 100 kgs to cater to the terrace gardeners and goes up to several tonnes.

 

Given below are some of the communities that are participating in SGCC Campaign.

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  1. Mantri Sarovar - HSR Layout

  2. Bren Celestia - Kaikondarahalli

  3. KV Lakefront - Yelachenahalli

  4. Divyashree Elan - Kaikondarahalli

  5. Shobha Quartz - Bellandur

  6. Mythreyi Naimisha - Lakkasandra

  7. KV Lakefront - Yelachenahalli

  8. Divyashree Elan - Kaikondarahall

  9. Sobha Althea-Azalea, Yelahanka

To sign up as a producer, kindly fill the form 

Compost Buyers
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Small farmers

These are small farmers who want to use it in their farms to grow fruits, vegetables and other crops.

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Terrace gardeners

They are using it to grow vegetables, fruits and flowers on the terrace.

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Compost resellers

They are buying the compost, enhancing it and reselling it in the open market.

Here are some of the buyers who have purchased compost as part of the SGCC Campaign

  • Kiran - farmer from Kunigal

  • Ranganath - farmer from Harohalli

  • Madhusudan - farmer from Bengaluru

  • Pradeep Upadhyay - farmer from Bengaluru

  • Raghuveer Panaganti - farmer from Bengaluru

  • Bhaskar Sivanathan - farmer from Bengaluru

  • Dinesh Rao - Intermediary from Bengaluru

  • Wilson Antony - terrace gardener from Bengaluru

To sign up as a buyer, kindly fill the form 

 
Terms & Conditions

SGCC is a volunteer-driven campaign and has no commercial interest. The volunteers bring together producers and buyers and make sure that only good quality compost is sold through the network. To meet our objectives and to keep things on an even keel, we have put in place certain checks and balances so that both producers and buyers are benefited equally through the network.

Sale starts from a minimum of 100kg

Bulk selling starts from 500 kg and above. 
The price of unsieved compost 500 kg and above: Rs 1.50 per kg.  

 

Any sale below 500 kg will attract two types of pricing: 
a. Unsieved and unbagged compost: Rs 3 per kg. 
b. Sieved and bagged compost: Rs 5 per kg. (The seller will bear the cost of bags)

As a producer ....

  • You will ensure proper segregation at source. If there are too many bits and pieces of non-biodegradable material in your compost, it will be rejected. 

  • You will use only a sustainable solution to process your kitchen and/or garden waste. 

  • You will sell only properly processed compost where the original nature, shape, size and colour of the raw material has transformed into a black substance. Otherwise, it is not called compost. 

  • The compost must be moist, not too wet or soggy. 

  • Always remind the buyers to cure the compost before using. Otherwise, it can harm the plants. 

  • Output from 24-hour automatic composters is NOT allowed in our network. If you are using one such machine, you have to let us know. These machines — which are nothing but glorified incinerators — put out burnt carbon, not compost. It destroys the soil composition and kills the plants. 

  • You will inform the campaigners when you have stock and not encourage the buyers to contact you directly as it defeats the purpose of this initiative. 

As a buyer ....

  • BUYER BEWARE: We verify the producers before we allow them into the group. Still, we recommend that you visit the community before buying. Buy only if you are happy with the composting method used, the quality of the processes and the output. 

  • Minimum purchase quantity: 100 kg or more. 

  • You have to take your own bags, labour and vehicle. No home delivery. If you want the producer to help you with labour, then you have to pay for labour as well.  

  • The compost is not in a ready-to-use form. It needs curing. Please do NOT use the compost before curing. 

  • On every Saturday, we put up a list of communities who have compost to sell. Talk to the producers directly, check their processes, and buy. 

  • No buyer is allowed to alter or bargain over the bulk price (Rs 1.50/kg). The producers incur a lot of expenses, more so with the cost of cocopeat going up steadily due to the rising fuel prices. 

  • Be aware of the CURING PROCESS

CURING PROCESS

All compost buyers must post-process the compost and not use it right after you buy it. Apartments do not have the time and/or space to process it fully. 

Once you buy it, allow the compost to cure in a container or gunny bags that allow enough aeration. If it’s dry, sprinkle some water so that the process restarts. If it is too wet/soggy, dry it in shade. Keep turning it once or twice a week so that the temperature does not build up only in the core. Keep checking the temperature. If it’s warm, that means it needs more time to become stable. 

In your farmland, you can spread it in a windrow-like fashion: about 4 feet high, 4 feet wide and length can be 10 feet or more. If there is a little bit of smell, that means the pile needs aeration and it will disappear if you aerate it well. Make sure rainwater does not enter the pile. Once the pile cools down completely, allow it to stay for a few weeks more so that humus formation happens. Only after proper curing, the compost/humus becomes highly beneficial to your soil as it increases the soil’s capacity to absorb the nutrients and make the plants/crops build immunity against diseases/infections.

If you use semi-processed compost to your plants, it will suck all the oxygen from the root zones and can greatly affect the plant's health. So, please pay attention to the curing process.
 

To all the participants in the WhatsApp group, help us help you:

 

  • Avoid forwarding unrelated content to the group and creating any sort of nuisance.  

  • If you have any issues, contact the group admins directly. 

  • SGCC team is not responsible if T&Cs are ignored by the participant. 

  • If any participant is found violating the T&Cs, that person will be expelled from the group.  

Success Stories
 

Chickammani Amma is from a village in Ramanagara, about 50 km away from Bangalore. She was into chemical farming earlier. But now,  this full-of-energy and graceful woman is going hammer and tongs at organic farming! 

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We have fed the compost given by you... Here's ragi (grown) in half an acre of land. Look at how our ragi has grown. Do send us your compost like this. We will do farming and grow the food for you. Thanks to you.

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SGCC compost is reaching farmlands beyond Bangalore. An apartment gave away its compost for free to Beru organisation which is striving to take 12-13 farmers in that area on the right path by shunning hazardous chemical farming. And Chickammani Amma is one such farmer.

Kiran is a young organic farmer who owns an acre of land in Kunigal. Right from the beginning when SGCC was taking roots, he showed great interest in buying the compost and post-processing it in his farm.

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Without SGCC, it would have been impossible to procure the amount of compost I was looking for and at that price. This availability of compost would probably help many turn to being organic.

Queries/Suggestions
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For any queries, send email to swachagraha@gmail.com