SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities
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TOPIC: SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities

SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities 02 Mar 2014 18:58 #7577

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The SOIL 2013 Annual Report is finally here! Apologies for the belated posting to Susana. We hope you enjoy this quick summary of what we accomplished in 2013 from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models for household sanitation. Read also about SOIL's composting and agricultural activities. Please direct questions to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and happy 2014 (only 2 months late!).


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Posted by the SOIL Team based in Haiti since 2006. Find more information about SOIL at:
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Re: SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities 14 Mar 2014 18:48 #7812

  • joeturner
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Hello, as discussed elsewhere (see here on the forum: forum.susana.org/forum/categories/139-in...anitation-myths#7798), I'm quite interested to hear about how you time the growing of leafy vegetables in your faeces compost.

In the UK, I think you wouldn't be able to grow cabbages or lettuce in it until after it had been spread on the soil for 12 months.

Personally, I don't think I would grow cabbages or lettuce in it at all ever.
I don't work for anyone, I am a philosopher interested to think about how we think about WASH and sanitation. All thoughts are mine alone, I am responsible for any errors.

Previously trained and worked as a Soil Scientist and worked on projects composting sewage sludge.
Last Edit: 15 Mar 2014 23:22 by muench. Reason: added hyperlink

Re: SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities 16 Mar 2014 21:42 #7831

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Thanks for your comments Joe. You are right that it is always good to ere on the side of caution when it comes to applying compost from human waste to food crops. We only encourage the unrestricted use of compost that is produced in a controlled composting site where proper temperatures are maintained and recorded, and compost is tested for pathogens before sale. As SOIL's "Konpòs Lakay" is all tested before distribution and meets both regulatory standards for compost in Haiti and Class A biosolids compost standards in the US, we feel that this compost does not pose a health risk when applied to vegetables. In the US, Class A compost can be applied to vegetables but we recognize these standards vary greatly from country to country.

There is a risk that the use of SOIL's compost will encourage other reuse of composted human waste which may not have been produced under controlled conditions and could pose a health risk. In our outreach we try to be clear about only using compost that has been tested for pathogens on leafy vegetables.

SOIL will continue to monitor our compost for safety and encourage users to use human waste compost responsibly. We also encourage good risk management in food preparation and support national messaging that all vegetables should be washed with treated water prior to being eaten raw. We appreciate your vigilance and would love to have more information on regulations about the application of human waste compost worldwide.

Our staff are our most enthusiastic customers for leafy vegetables from the SOIL garden and we have had no complaints of sickness. We take great care at the compost site and have confidence in our product. That said, we can understand and respect your hesitancy about having it on your own vegetables.

Thanks again for sharing your thoughts on this.
Take care, Sasha


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Posted by the SOIL Team based in Haiti since 2006. Find more information about SOIL at:
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Last Edit: 16 Mar 2014 22:20 by SOILHaiti.
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Re: SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities 16 Mar 2014 22:47 #7833

  • joeturner
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Thanks for the reply. I think there is a spectrum of processes of human faeces composting - and, from what I've read and heard about SOIL Haiti, I would put your processes in the very highest category. I absolutely believe that faeces composting can only be considered to be safe if it is batch tested regularly for known pathogens.

And, for me, this is the problem: if people in general hear that it is possible to safely compost faeces and grow cabbages in it, then those who are not taking the care and doing the batch testing that SOIL may also think that their faeces compost is safe.

I think the responsible advice to everyone is that additional barriers are necessary to ensure risk transfer is reduced to the minimum possible. I think this means regular monitoring and management of compost, provision of safety equipment and training of workers, and care in the use of the compost. If batch pathogen testing of the compost is not available, leafy vegetables should not be grown in the compost.

I would not give my family raw food that has been grown in faeces compost. I would much rather use the faeces compost to grow some other green crop to harvest and compost and use that on a food crop to add an extra barrier to pathogen transfer.
I don't work for anyone, I am a philosopher interested to think about how we think about WASH and sanitation. All thoughts are mine alone, I am responsible for any errors.

Previously trained and worked as a Soil Scientist and worked on projects composting sewage sludge.

Re: SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities 17 Mar 2014 18:42 #7859

  • joeturner
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  • I am a shit philosopher, thinking about how we think about sanitation. I think our main paradigms in WASH may be wrong.
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Hello again, I noticed you tweeting with regarding to this piece in the New Yorker magazine - discussing sanitation in Haiti but not directly SOILHaiti.

I'm interested to know the extent to which you believe that your processes can/could be upscaled and whether you could ever have a nation-scale system.
I don't work for anyone, I am a philosopher interested to think about how we think about WASH and sanitation. All thoughts are mine alone, I am responsible for any errors.

Previously trained and worked as a Soil Scientist and worked on projects composting sewage sludge.
Last Edit: 17 Mar 2014 18:44 by joeturner.

Re: SOIL Annual Report 2013 - from emergency ecological sanitation to the piloting of social business models to composting and agricultural activities 24 Mar 2014 15:31 #7954

  • SOILHaiti
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Hi Joe,

Thanks for your question. As we discussed on Twitter, SOIL firmly believes that no one solution will solve the sanitation crisis and there is room for many innovations to come to the table. As such, we do not believe that EcoSan alone can be adopted by everyone in Haiti. That said, we believe that there is incredible potential in bringing EcoSan to scale, particularly in urban areas, here in Haiti and abroad. Please feel free to follow our progress on this effort on our blog, www.oursoil.org/blog."

Warm regards,
Sasha
Posted by the SOIL Team based in Haiti since 2006. Find more information about SOIL at:
Website: www.oursoil.org
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Twitter: @SOILHaiti.
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