, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 13 – Kenyan company Top Third Ventures has introduced an energy efficient stove which will reduce by two-thirds the amount of wood fuel rural women use to prepare their food.
Company CEO Lucas Belenky said the innovation called the Baker stove will contribute toward the conservation of Kenya’s forest cover.
“The main problem with the way the majority of the population in Kenya cook is that they utilise a technology called the three stone fire which is very inefficient. Only 10 percent of the energy in the wood actually goes toward heating the food so they have to use a lot of wood to prepare their daily meals,” Belenky explained.
In addition to cutting down on cooking time, Belenky said, the stove reduces the time spent collecting firewood. “Women in the developing world use 16 hours a week collecting firewood to cook. In Kenya they collect and use an average of 77 kilos of firewood in that time.”
The environment is set to benefit further from reduced carbon emissions, according to National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) Director General Geoffrey Wahungu.
“This project will contribute to the overall realisation of Kenya Vision 2030 through improvement in energy efficiency and reduction in greenhouse gas emissions,” Wahungu said.
Belenky explained that by extension, rural women would experience health benefits: “They inhale a lot of smoke and it’s the equivalent of smoking two packs of cigarettes a day. It’s estimated that four million people die every year from indoor air pollution from cooking. This is more than malaria and HIV/AIDS combined. This saves lives because less wood means less smoke.”
The Baker stove takes the shape of a three legged stool so the targeted rural consumer can better identify with the product Belenky said: “We’d invite a lot of women, we’d prepare some food and we’d talk about what do you like on this one, what do you like on that one. I want my customers to buy this product and the next day invite all their friends for dinner and show it off.”
The Baker stove currently retails for Sh4,938 at a maiden store in Laikipia district but you can visit the indiegogo website to make your purchase.