Published on 03/06/2011

First Update 28/03/2017

Mrudula Saptarshi of Mumbai, “”¬† was a crusader for separation of garbage at the household level. Segregation¬† into wet/organic (kitchen) and dry/synthetic waste (plastic, glass, paper, metal).¬† She began with vermiculture (using earthworms to convert garbage to compost) in her kitchen garden. She is now a consultant to many organisations.

Vermigold International, her company, is a Rs 25 lakh a year business that has graduated to large projects.She has launched a project jointly with the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCM) where MCM has leased her 2,400 sq.m of land for free, and has promised to provide 35 tonnes of vegetable and flower waste daily from the Dadar market. The unit cost Rs 10 lakh, and MCM gave an interest-free mobilisation advance of Rs 5 lakh (to be repaid in 10 instalments over 28 months, with an 18-month moratorium). The other Rs 5 lakh came from Saptarshi.

The unit has a monthly capacity of 100 tonnes; compost will be retailed at Rs 15 a kg. Saptarshi will pay MCM Rs 25,000 a month or 10 per cent of profits, whichever is higher.

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