German Startup Franchises Biogas Bag Business in Africa

By Mike Hower, Sustainable Brands.

German social enterprise B-Energy has developed portable “digester” bags that produce methane gas out of food waste or animal droppings, which can help low-income entrepreneurs in the global South make a living through a franchise model, BBC News reports.

The bags, which are heat and fire resistant, come with a tap and pipe that users can attach to a gas stove. They hold up to 1.2 cubic meters of gas — enough for about five hours of cooking.

Currently, the business still is in its early stages, with two franchisees in Ethiopia and one in Sudan. B-Energy hopes its bags can serve as a clean, cheap alternative to cooking on smoky, polluting wood fires, which is common in both of these countries and throughout the world’s poorest regions.