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  Home >> Cleanliness >> Vermiculture Biotechnology

 Vermiculture Biotechnology
- Aparna Inamdar - Geosense  

It involves processing of various types of non-toxic, natural/biodegradable waste as feeding material, to a product, with the help of deep burrowing earthworm Pheretima elongata and several microorganisms. The microorganisms bring about aerobic degradation of these wastes in a speedy manner if they’re provided with favourable conditions of temperature, moisture, pH, air and growth nutrients. Burrowing earthworms provide these ideal conditions for the proliferation of beneficial microorganisms due to there burrowing activity. The product so formed is a rich biofertilizer containing several micronutrients, enzymes, vitamins, antibiotics, cultures of microorganisms and cocoons of Pheretima elongata.  

Advantages of the process:

1. The process being aerobic, is devoid of any foul smell that normally accompanies the waste and its decomposition.

2. The process takes place at a pH value of 7-7.5, therefore does not attract pests like flies, mosquitoes, rats, ants and cockroaches.

3. The process requires very less water (about 50% of moisture level).

4. The process is extremely environment friendly as no chemicals are used for controlling the process.

5. No recurrent expenditures on materials required, hence most inexpensive.

6. It doesn’t involve turning of garbage as the process is a continuous one which involves spreading of garbage or waste in layers everyday, therefore process is least labor intensive.

7. As the earthworms are deep burrowing and light sensitive, they prefer to remain inside the soil and not come out of the pits or the pots and therefore these are very useful for processing the waste at source such as individual households, societies etc. without the fear of earthworms crawling out.

8. The process is a continuous one and hence no need to harvest the product periodically which requires labour. The harvesting can be done as and when required.

9. The product formed is a culture and can be used for processing of diverse solid and liquid organic waste and not just a fertilizer for plants.

10. The product is also very useful for improving soil quality chemically, physically and biologically.

11. It is used for sustainable agriculture, wasteland development and in checking the soil erosion.  

Methodology used for the processing:

It involves the following stages:

1. Vermibed preparation

2. Incubation

3. Garbage loading

4. Harvesting  

Costs involved:

If the processing is done at society level, most of the requirements can be met with from the existing facilities and man power. Additional costs are required for:

1. Designing and commissioning of the vermibed (one time expenditure).

2. Regular loading, supervision and monitoring of the process by the expert for a certain period (recurring expenditure).

The activity at the end of one year not only can support itself but can also become profitable.


It is one of the beautiful compensations of this life that no one can sincerely try to help another without helping himself. --Charles Dudley Warner