Tobias Bandel

As co-founder of the company “Soil and More”, Tobias Bandel tirelessly promotes the importance of soil fertility. His firm builds composting systems in developing and industrialised countries alike.

It also advises farmers on how to restore fertile topsoil through locally-adapted, sustainable soil management and, in doing so, contribute to long-term soil fertility.

The values that Tobias sees as underpinning his business are integrity, social responsibility, respect for the environment, science-based innovation and practical solutions. He is now in high demand as an expert in the field of soil health. Bandel’s work as an advisor takes him from India to Africa and Europe. He not only advises prospective organic farms on how to keep their soil healthy and fertile, but is also sought out by global agribusinesses whose coffee, tea and cocoa plantations are becoming less productive thanks to the decades-long use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides.

“One of the most important purposes of compost and soil fertility is to support soil life. If you look at some soil under a microscope, you see a crystalline structure. The different crystals, together with the microorganisms, create this soil construct: a sponge-like structure. If it’s intact, it holds together and can resist erosion and retain water. But when these microbes disappear because they’ve been killed off by mineral salts, the structure falls apart. Then you have landslides and wind erosion – and, of course, it becomes impossible to grow plants in it”.