Why urine ?
Urine is composed of water, urea, and a variety of other compounds, including nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, which are essential for plant growth.
The volume of wastewater accounts for a very small amount of urine (<1%). However it contains most of the compounds not wanted in natural waters (>80%), such as nitrogen, phosphorus or pharmaceuticals.
At Eawag, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, we developed after 15 years of research a patented treatment and recovery system where urine is transformed into a valuable and certified fertiliser, Aurin.
The VUNA project was led by Eawag research between 2010 and 2015 with the goal to recover nutrients from urine and empower farmers in South Africa.
VUNA stands for Valorisation of Urine Nutrients in Africa, and was the name of the research project. In isiZulu, the word 'vuna' means harvest.
Vuna GmbH, our sister company, was founded in 2016 leading the way in the installation of decentralised sanitation solutions in general.
VunaNexus AG was created in 2022, to focus solely on the urine treatment technology and fertiliser production.