“Vetiver, a perennial grass, has roots that go down 20 to 30 feet. When farmers plant it alongside their crops, it can reduce soil erosion. The plant’s shoots are a waste product. I worked in Haiti as an EMT and saw children die of poverty and malnutrition. I wanted to address the problem, so I took a Grand Challenges class with a friend. We started thinking about what to do with vetiver shoots that would be profitable for farmers. We’re working on a machine-spun prototype of vetiver yarn. If our yarn becomes a mainstream product, we can expand beyond Haiti to other impoverished countries where vetiver grows.” Visit the University of Minnesota Legacy Magazine to read the full story.