The concept of zero waste has recently become a popular topic of discussion. Zero waste agriculture is a model of sustainable agriculture with the goal of developing farms that simulate how natural ecosystems work. It takes the concept of zero waste one step further by developing a reusable method to fuel one area’s nutritional needs with another area’s waste. The zero waste farming lifestyle has positively impacted many farmers across the world. It has not only reduced farm-based pollution, but also increased efficient methods empowered by zero waste agriculture’s concept of reusability.
Father Godfrey Nzamujo, a priest and professor at the University of California, Irvine, is one individual who experienced the benefits of zero waste farming when he was searching for a solution to solve hunger developing countries. 35 years ago, Nzamujo traveled to Africa in hopes of solving one of the most critical problems plaguing the region. Using his PhD in microbiology, Nzamujo studied the land by experimenting on limited land and with a small amount of seeds. Nzamujo found that Africa had great potential in producing nutritious crops. He believed that it was not the drought that prohibited abundant growth of crops but rather the lack of focus on sustainability.
Nzamujo began experimenting with sustainable farming which utilized the concept of zero waste. Located in the West African country of Benin, Nzamujo’s farm not only became a crucial food source for the local population but also helped create a number of job opportunities. Now, Nzamujo’s farm — named “Songhai” — employs over 300 people every day. The employees help harvest crops, tend the animals, and aid Nzamujo by fine-tuning the mechanics and functions of their sustainable agriculture farm. Additionally, Nzamujo has developed educational programs to teach aspiring farmer-entrepreneurs techniques to run a successful sustainable farm. Farmers from across the world have come to Nzamujo’s place to learn more about investing in zero waste agriculture.