BURN, a company known for producing more than four million efficient cook-stoves across Africa, is set to open Nigeria’s inaugural factory for these appliances. These stoves are designed to significantly reduce wood consumption, combat pollution, and tackle deforestation.Thank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!
Situated in Kano, a city in the northern region of Nigeria, this marks BURN’s first factory outside of Kenya. The move aims to cater to the needs of Africa’s most populous nation, where many lack access to electricity, leaving them reliant on wood and charcoal for cooking.
The sub-Saharan African cooking fuel market, estimated at $47 billion by the World Bank, primarily relies on wood and charcoal. Up to 900 million people on the continent use these fuels, contributing to pollution that significantly shortens the lives of over half a million Africans annually, often due to exposure in enclosed spaces.
Chris McKinney, BURN’s Chief Commercial Officer, emphasizes the limited access to alternative fuels in rural communities. He notes that cooking over open fires is a major health risk, surpassing malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV-AIDS.
BURN’s wood stoves are reported to use 71% less wood and produce 81% less smoke than traditional open-fire cooking methods. While the initial focus will be on wood stoves, the product line will expand to include charcoal stoves once the factory is operational.
To promote the adoption of these stoves, BURN sells carbon credits based on the deforestation it helps prevent, allowing them to offer discounts. They currently distribute these stoves, manufactured in Kenya, throughout the continent.
Efficient cooking methods play a crucial role in Africa’s battle against harmful pollution, reducing the time women and girls spend searching for wood in rural areas and cutting carbon emissions. Nigeria’s sovereign wealth fund is exploring the possibility of funding another factory in the country, while Mozambique is seeking support to introduce cleaner cooking methods in remote areas.
BURN, headquartered in Nairobi, faces competition from various rivals, including KOKO Networks, another Kenyan company offering stoves using bioethanol. Most of BURN’s business operations are concentrated in East Africa.
Additionally, BURN also manufactures stoves that use liquefied petroleum gas and has introduced an electric line. They have plans to increase stove production capacity by 25% by the end of the year at their Nairobi plants.