Originally published on March 6, 2015.
In January, Wanda Organic Innovation Champion Marion Moon launched the #WandaRevolution - a crowd-funding campaign to raise $45,000 to pilot Plantmate Organic Fertilizer in Machakos County. Just over a year into the Innovation Engine grant, Wanda Organic's innovation currently involves conducting trials on 35 farms in Machakos and Makueni Counties to test the viability of the fertilizer and the potential for commercial success.
Wanda Organic Ltd. is a small and growing social enterprise established to identify and provide sustainable solutions for soil and plant health. Inspired by the success of Plantmate Organic Fertilizer in Thailand and the Philippines, Marion purposed to implement the concept back home in Kenya to make a positive impact on people's lives.
So far, with seed funding and technical assistance from the Innovation Engine, Wanda Organic has successfully demonstrated and trialed the products with smallholder farmer groups in Machakos and Makueni Counties. Demand for the products is rising as farmers see the remarkable results for themselves; vegetables grown using the organic fertilizer produce a bigger and healthier yield, than those grown using the prevalent synthetic fertilizers. Synthetic fertilizers, when used in isolation, are damaging the soil.
I see a peaceful and prosperous Africa, in which our resources are managed sustainably for the benefit of all people and the secure future of our planet.
"Unfortunately the current supply chain requires farmers to travel long distances to access fertilizers," said Marion.
To help address this challenge, the crowd-funding campaign aims to raise enough money to build two village-level distribution centers and develop mini orchards and gardens to be used as training and demonstration sites. The innovator will also use part of the funds will also to recruit two agents to manage the distribution centers.
"We want to develop a supply chain that enables convenience and accessibility of bio-organic fertilizers", she added.
Eventually, Wanda Organic hopes to set up a production plant in Kenya, to help make the fertilizer more affordable. It currently retails at $35 for a 50kg bag.
After a two-and-a-half year process attaining the necessary Government approvals to roll out, Marion is very excited about taking the innovation to the next phase of transforming rural agriculture.
Join the #WandaRevolution now and make your contribution to improving soil fertility, food security and economic growth!