A sole believer of “never let anything go to waste”, 11-year-old Maryam Muzamir from Kuantan has created Yam 2.0 – a sustainable animal feed made from discarded shrimp shells and seashells.
The primary school student from SK Perempuan Methodist was inspired after noticing the number of shrimp shells and seashells that would go to waste at seafood restaurants.
“Shells contain chitin, which is an important chemical for the production of animal feed,” she said.
“In June last year, I informed my father and we spoke to the restaurant operators here to give the shrimp and sea shell waste to us instead of throwing them away. The operators agreed and I was determined to make it a success,” she told NST.
Since then, Maryam has collected about 30kg of shrimp and sea snail waste and continues to dry them out in the sun.
Once dried, she separates the shrimp and sea snails before grinding them into a fine powder texture. Finally, she distributes her free samples to a local dairy cattle farm.
Based on observation, not only has Maryam made a safer and more sustainable alternative for cow feed that doesn’t affect the quality of the cow’s milk, her creation can also be used to feed other farm animals too.
Maryam’s Yam 2.0 is also cost-effective and can play a big part in controlling the production cost in the supply chain.
With this amazing invention, Maryam has managed to earn herself three awards from the Citrex (Creation, Innovation, Technology & Research Exposition) last year and this year, along with a third gold at I-RIE (International Research Invention and Innovation Exhibition 2021).
Just last month, she became the youngest gold medalist at The Canadian Special Award at the 6th International Invention Innovation Competition (iCAN 2021) in Toronto, Canada.
Inspired by the works of environmental activist Greta Thunberg and blessed with a supportive father, Maryam told reporters that she plans to continue tackling climate change and food waste with Yam 2.0.