For Healthier Soil, Healthier Food…Compost!

PR —   “For Healthier Soil, Healthier Food…Compost!”

This is the message and international theme for the 2023 International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW) May 7 to 13 2023. In Grenada this message has been endorsed and exemplified by the Inter-American Institute for Co-operation on Agriculture (IICA) and the Grenada Solid Waste Management Authority (GSWMA) as they continue their public education drive for waste diversion from the very limited small island’s landfill, as according to the GSWMA, organic materials account for 44% of waste there. 

One highlight of ICAW in Grenada was the culmination of the Community Composting Project sponsored by the Sandals Foundation. This initiative reached 100 persons from two traditionally farming communities of Clozier in St. John and Telescope in St. Andrew.  During the course of five months, they went through a process of community waste management awareness and then were taught composting best practices focusing on the Windrow method which is faster, non-pungent and highly effective for producing high-quality organic fertilizer. In addition to the theoretical and practical sessions, five families in each community were provided with composting bins for communal composting to be continued. It is expected that 100 households will participate in this activity and benefit from waste separation and composting of their organic waste.

Present at the closing ceremony held at the Clozier Community Center were, Honorable Senator Adrian Thomas, Minister for Agriculture, as well as parliamentary representative for the area and Minister for Climate Resilience, the Environment, and Renewable Energy Honorable Kerryne James. She commended the work of participants, “Your decision to compost and the practice of composting is an important part in achieving a healthier and more reliable food supply and bringing us closer to the development goal of ‘zero hunger’. Continue to share this knowledge so this practice and tradition can be reinvigorated in our communities.”

A Certificate of completion was awarded to each of the participants of the composting project and they were encouraged to continue participating in the ongoing composting activities in their communities.

Elated and passionate about her backyard garden and her new expertise -in composting, participant, RoseAnn Pysadee expressed gratitude, “Thank you to all the stakeholders who made this happen, especially, Mr. Derek Charles, Consultant for IICA for your patience and diligence with us. You were an excellent teacher, and problem solver.”

The community compost project in Grenada forms part of a wider regional food security effort of the Sandals Foundation to strengthen the food systems and environmental education within Caribbean communities and schools.

“We are extremely proud to see the advancements residents have made in practicing what they have learnt. Our kitchen gardens are rich in so much resource that can help multiply our food supply while reducing our waste production. The island’s landfill hosts a finite space and capacity and together we can redirect nutritious agriculture ingredients away from this site and reuse it to feed our families in a sustainable way,” says Patrice Gilpin, Public Relations Manager at the Sandals Foundation.