No designer or innovator should love one’s own creation to the extent that she or he becomes blind to its drawbacks. Hardly ever do we get to see a product that is complete in its first avatar itself. All products do need finetuning, don’t they? But that is possible only if the creator heeds customers’ feedback and gets back to the designing table. Eartha has emerged from that table, made multiple trips to the factory, moved through the seasons, and is now ready to weather the whims of all sorts of weather.
Eartha, hitherto GreenOn, has undergone multiple modifications over the years. After Endlessly Green’s tie-up with GreenOn, Eartha underwent another major round of finetuning. We focused on synergestic deliverables that dive deep towards end-user satisfaction. The version we currently have bears the signature of years of learning and reflects the pride in the new team’s work ethics. In fact, this hands-on attitude runs like a thread through the entire multi-step process and persists till Eartha is carefully packed and shipped. Thanks to its creator Prasanna Kumar’s dogged pursuit after his foray into an unfamiliar terrain, Eartha is what she is now.
Made of fibre-reinforced polymer (FRP), Eartha has 1200 litres of capacity with 4ft L x 3 ft W x 3.6ft H dimensions. The material is long-lasting and doesn’t call for repainting. The carbon credits it earns by processing huge amounts of waste over many years far outweigh the carbon footprint it leaves behind during its manufacturing stages.
The design is simple, yet intricate. I can say this with confidence because of my own involvement in the final modification process. For an untrained eye, all composters look like silly boxes that sit with a pile of waste decomposing inside. But it takes a trained eye, a fine touch that senses what the eyes miss out and an experiential bandwidth—combined, in our case—to deliver a solution spiked with contemporary flair. The result: Eartha is well-aerated, rain-proof, leak-proof, flies-proof, rodent-proof, rust-proof and highly durable if maintained with care.
Eartha has four PVC aerators attached to a compost tea strainer which sits a few inches above the base. The strainer holds up the pile as the excess liquid gets collected in the bottom tank. A tap attached to the tank on the outside helps you drain out the compost tea with ease. When there are multiple composters, they can be networked so that the compost tea is let out and collected through only one tap.
It’s a no-brainer that for aerobic method, air is the most essential ingredient. Insufficient air pockets inside a pile trigger excess maggot proliferation as moisture fails to escape and also emits foul odour. It also results in compost tea leak all around which can be annoying.
Apart from the four aerators inside which suck the air in, Eartha has aeration vents all around and the ribs let sufficient air in and prevent compost tea leak. On the inside, the ribs are layered with a fine stainless-steel mesh to prevent entry to flies from outside and exit to maggots from inside. A small downward projection over the rib acts as a rain guard. The lid fitted with a stainless-steel hood prop helps you carry on with work. A hatch in the front allows you to harvest the compost with ease.
Eartha scores high on aesthetics with glossy surface, and functionality due to its well-thought-out features covering all possible aspects to make a community volunteer’s job easy. It is fully closed with a lid without allowing flies breakout. It works well both indoors and outdoors. Just make sure the spot has ample aeration and is kept clean and tidy.
Put a thick layer of Endlessly Green microbial cocopeat at the bottom. You can also use dry leaves if you have. Spread a layer of shredded kitchen waste and a layer of cocopeat on top of it. Repeat the process till you reach the top leaving the tip of the aerator free so that airflow goes on unhindered. Always cover the top layer with cocopeat or dry leaves to prevent fruit flies from accessing the food waste. Follow the process till the last composter is filled up. By then, the first one will be ready for harvesting.
If you find the layering process time-consuming, then go for mixing method. After the bottom layer of cocopeat or dry leaves is prepared, then get the shredded waste and microbial cocopeat mixed in suggested proportions and transfer it to the composter. Just put a layer of cocopeat on top of it.
This is one of the best features of Eartha. The hatch is large and can be fixed from outside and secured with a few nuts and bolts. When the process is through, just unbolt the hatch and rake out the compost. Check out the video to know more.
Eartha can take up to 750 kg of shredded waste mixed with cocopeat if filled at once. If it is added day by day in small quantities, then it can take in some more as the pile breaks down. On a daily basis, it can take in 25 kg over 30 days.
Each composter is priced at Rs 50,000, plus taxes and transport cost as per actual. For 100 homes, 4-5 composters will suffice if the waste is shredded/chopped. If not, then it will need one or two extra composters. The requirement is calculated keeping one kg of kitchen waste output per day, per home as the basis. If your community generates lesser quantities, then you will need fewer composters. Please note that waste generation has gone up from an average 500-700 gm of kitchen waste per day to about 1 kg since Covid breakout.
ENDLESSLY GREEN SHREDDER
Endlessly Green shredder is an efficient machine with double shaft stainless steel blades. It is not noisy and is pretty compact. For more details, click here.
ENDLESSLY GREEN MICROBIAL COCOPEAT
This is available in both block and powder form. It is also priced quite reasonably which allows you to keep your operational expenditure tight. You can further reduce the cost by reusing 40 percent of compost from an earlier batch and add only 60 percent of fresh microbial cocopeat from the next batch onwards. Our microbial cocopeat is very well-processed, has the right degree of electrical conductivity and is well-decomposed. Even the powdered version contains just the right amount of moisture so that the microbes survive but still has enough capacity to absorb extra moisture from the food waste. To know more about the difference between microbial cocopeat bricks/blocks and powdered cocopeat, quality standards and processing methods, click here.
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