Grace is the founder of Green Eco Solutions based in Naivasha, Nakuru County, Kenya. She is in the charcoal briquettes business. The business began in 2014 and was incorporated in 2016.
Speaking to Grace during the Clean Cooking Forum 2019 that took place in Nairobi from 5th to 7th November, she draws her inspirations from the late Prof. Wangari Maathai’s
Hummingbird story, ‘I will be a Hummingbird: I will do the best I can.’
She aims to impact a positive change in the environment motivated by the reality of forest destruction in her community, leading to insufficient of firewood, which is the principal source of cooking fuel.
Grace produces carbonized charcoal briquettes from salvaged charcoal dust sourced from women charcoal vendors.
Makaa Tunza by Green Eco Solutions
Through an online forum, Grace learnt about carbonized briquettes. She utilized the knowledge acquired and started producing Makaa Tunza briquettes that she now sells to households, hotels, schools, chicken brooders, and briquettes retailers within Nakuru and Nairobi counties.
She intends to expand her business to reach more people with a primary focus on those in rural areas.
She says briquettes are advantageous because it lasts 3-times more than the ordinary charcoal. It is cost-effective to users, smokeless and the carbon emission is lower.
Grace says one of the greatest challenges faced by those in the briquette business is the expensive cost of certification and testing of the amount of carbon emitted, especially now that the profit margin is small.
Starting and running costs can be high.
There is a lack of awareness; people are still skeptical about purchasing briquettes.
On the brighter side
Standards governing briquette production are underway, they are soon to be launched. The Standards previously used were not necessarily applicable to the Kenyan situation.
‘I feel accomplished that I am working on something that has a positive impact on that lady in the village and the environment,’ Grace.
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