Working towards healthier food production and sustainable waste management
Pelwatte Dairy Industries, the industry leader in local dairy produce has been known for enriching lives – not just by providing nutrition through its dairy products but also through the consecutive training and support that it extends to farmers and their families, thereby empowering them, the economy and the country as a whole. Pelwatte is now taking steps to address issues pertaining to sustainable agriculture, food produce and waste management while also hoping to overcome the dire consequences caused by chemical-based fertilisers – from soil damage to renal diseases.
With the aspiration of engaging in sustainable growth and empowerment, Pelwatte Dairy has now introduced its new range of organic fertilisers (compost) to the Sri Lankan market. The Pelwatte compost is manufactured to meet industrial and departmental standards and has been certified for its quality. Through this new product, the company seeks to mitigate the usage and effects incurred by chemical fertilisers in food produce while also creating a momentum of sustainable waste management. Pelwatte announced that the compost will be soon available in a range of sized bags to choose from.
Pelwatte Dairy Industries first launched the project in its dairy farm in Walugolla in October 2018 with the assistance and consultation of the Sustainable Food Development Programme – an initiative of the Presidential Secretariat. The Walugolla farm has been involved in cattle breeding, farmer training programmes, and has now kickstarted the production of organic compost.
The organic compost is rich in nutrients and is beneficial to the land and produce in many ways –from serving as a soil conditioner, a fertilizer, an addition of vital humus or acids, to being a natural pesticide for soil.
Commenting on the new product, Farm Manager of Pelwatte Dairy Chamila Rajapaksha stated: “We use the recommended raw material and ensure that all guidelines are followed during the manufacturing process. We use cattle waste, poultry waste, used tea leaves, plant waste, carbonated paddy husk and Eppawala Rock Phosphate (ERP) for production. This is distinct from most other organic fertilisers that only use plant waste for the process.”
He further added: “Pelwatte Dairy takes keen interest in constantly ensuring that our goal of producing high quality compost is met, while also spotlighting the need for effective and sustainable waste management. Furthermore, reaffirming its standards, Pelwatte compost has been registered at the special unit for organic fertilisers under the Department of Agriculture.”
The compost manufacturing project was launched in response to the government’s instructions to use organic compost in agriculture following a time when people from several districts in Sri Lanka – primarily falling under the dry zone – were severely affected with a renal disease that, according to research, showed a direct correlation to the extensive use of chemical fertilisers over long periods of time.
The Government of Sri Lanka started promoting the use of organic fertilisers on a large scale because unlike chemical fertilisers, organic compost nourishes the soil and adds to the general wellbeing as there are many health benefits. There is a growing demand for organic fertilisers in the Western, Uva and Central Provinces, primarily for vegetable cultivation and horticulture, although it also avails to other purposes such as gardening, landscaping and urban agriculture.
Pelwatte Organic Compost will be soon made available at Agriculture stores and plant nurseries island wide, while it is currently available for purchase at all Pelwatte Dairy outlets in the Western Province in 40 kg, 20 kg, 10 kg and 5 kg bags priced at Rs. 800/-, Rs. 500/- Rs. 250/- and Rs. 150/- respectively. For more information, kindly contact Chamila at 0712991603.