Golden Seed Fats &Oil has launched biomass charcoal briquette called Maxiburn – a substitute for wood charcoal.
Lanre Sam-Akinkunmi, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, Golden Seed during a press briefing to launch the Maxiburn into the market, said that it is a direct substitute for wood charcoal which is the traditionally known charcoal.
“People, who need industrial heating, a lot of boiler application, furnaces, restaurants, hotels and homes can use our biomass charcoal briquette,” he said.
Akinkunmi noted that Golden Seed whose primary business is processing nuts into palm oil and palm cake has now shifted into the conversion of its palm kernel shell to biomass briquette used for industrial application, grilling and cooking as alternative to wood charcoal – which leads to huge deforestation and destruction of the environment.
He said that the high rate of forest depletion in the country may soon be a thing of the past, that the product is of high demand with great effect on the nation’s biodiversity as Nigeria has lost over 20 percent of its forest cover because of deforestation owing to the growing appetite for wood charcoal.
He stated that the biomass briquettes are smokeless fuel that has zero impact on the environment.
According to him, the organisation currently produces 400 metric tons of biomass charcoal briquettes monthly, from palm kernel shells mainly sourced from smallholder palm oil growers.
“The Maxiburn charcoal briquettes burn three times faster than wood charcoal, burning continuously for four straight hours while the traditional charcoal burns for only 45minutes.”
Akinkunmi added that his organisation is working to partner with relevant government agencies such as the Ministry of Environment, and the Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC) to ensure that the government lifts ban on charcoal export to enable Golden Seed tap earn substantial forex for the country through biomass charcoal briquette exports.
“Nigeria’s charcoal industry is a high volume market but it is facing huge clamp down owing to illegal logging of woods which forced the government to ban charcoal export.
“This is because there are no other sources of charcoal that people can produce charcoal from and that is why we came up with an alternative like this without having to cut down a tree by producing it from a palm kernel shell.
“We are looking at working with the Federal Government to lift the ban on charcoal export in the country,” he added.
He, however, advised the government to introduce charcoal classification by sources, to enable the country to tap into export opportunities amid acute FX shortages in the country.
“We can start classifying our charcoal whether it is from tree sources or agricultural waste,” he added.
He stated that everything used in making the biomass briquette is derived from oil palm and the only thing added is molasses – which is starch for binding.
He noted that Golden Seed is already talking with countries in Europe and Asia for export as soon as the ban on charcoal is lifted, adding that the briquette comes in various sizes, that it is cheaper than normal charcoal and meant for all income classes in the country.