Farmers in Magura district are embracing the commercial production of organic vermicompost fertilizer, a sustainable practice that harnesses the power of earthworms to transform waste materials into nutrient-rich compost.
This innovative method, known as vermicomposting, involves the conversion of rigid waste materials like cow dung and other organic matter into valuable compost through the natural activity of earthworms.
This “green” process not only reduces waste but also contributes to the enhancement of plant growth, offering cultivators a sustainable and eco-friendly solution to boost their agricultural endeavors.
Rumana Akhter, a diligent farmer hailing from Kajli village in the Sabdalpur union of Sreepur upazila in Magura, has spearheaded a vermicompost revolution that has not only boosted her own earnings but also earned her village the name of “Earthworm fertilizer production village.”
Akhter’s journey began in 2008 when she embarked on a journey to cultivate earthworm fertilizer within the confines of her own home. Armed with newfound knowledge gained from training provided by the Mujibnagar Agricultural Development Project, she took her first steps in vermicompost production. Despite initial challenges and limited resources, Akhter’s perseverance led to her amassing over 20 kg of African earthworms and scaling up her operation significantly.
Now, Akhter’s success story serves as a beacon of inspiration for her community and beyond. With a production capacity of approximately 15 tons of earthworm manure per month, derived from 20 tons of dung across 24 households, her efforts have not only enriched the local soil but also enriched her coffers. The vermicompost, a sought-after organic fertilizer, commands a price of Tk 15 per kg and has found a strong market demand, allowing Akhter to generate over Tk 30,000 in monthly revenue.
“I started cultivating earthworms (vermicompost) on a small scale in just two houses, along with a few African varieties of earthworms, after receiving training from the agriculture office,” shared Akhter. Her dedication and triumphs have led to the formation of a 30-member group under the initiative of the Upazila Agriculture Office, with each member contributing to earthworm fertilizer production.
Sufi Mohammad Rafiquzzaman, Deputy Director of the Magura Agricultural Extension Department, applauded Akhter’s accomplishments, attributing the village’s transformation to her success. “The village is now known as Earthworm Fertilizer Production Village due to Rumana Akter’s success,” he remarked, highlighting the growing interest in vermicompost cultivation and the escalating popularity of organic fertilizers in the Magura farming community.
As vermicompost gains momentum as an environmentally friendly and effective soil amendment, the agricultural department has pledged its unwavering support to budding entrepreneurs seeking to further this movement. With Rumana Akhter leading the way, the future of organic farming in Sreepur is undoubtedly looking greener and more prosperous than ever before.