- Animals: swine
- Animal Production: manure management
- Education and Training: extension, farmer to farmer
- Farm Business Management: whole farm planning
- Soil Management: composting, organic matter, soil quality/health
- Sustainable Communities: sustainability measures, quality of life
Careless management of pig manure and vegetative waste is degrading water and air quality on Tutuila, American Samoa’s main island. Futi Semanu plans to use his Western SARE Farmer/Rancher grant to turn these two waste streams into a useful product through earthworm composting, or vermiculture. This sustainable technology optimizes the natural soil-building biology and properties of earthworms to convert raw wastes into stable and valuable commercial products called vermicompost and earthworm castings. Semanu grows beans and cucumbers on 2 acres and is clearing 20 acres for increased vegetable production. He also plans to start a small pig farm. By both marketing the vermicompost and applying it to his land he can show others how to turn pollutants into profit.