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Bamboo seedling can sow a future of prosperity!

17 April 2013 The World Future Council Subject: Bamboo Charcoal Business in Figures
1. Charcoal is big business in Africa. According to the World Future Council, 80% of Africans rely on

wood or charcoal for energy and 4 million hectares of forest are felled each year on the continent, twice the world average. For many, there is no alternative. Bamboo forests are the only sustainable charcoal production source in Africa. Bamboo charcoal industry is a large industry. Big market exist in EU, USA and ASIA with gloabl prices of charcoal ranging from $170 to $300 per ton. 2. The charcoal industry in Kenya represents an estimated annual market value of Ksh32 billion that is

not visible to the government because of its informal nature. The Government of Kenya loses over Ksh5.1 billion annually as uncollected tax from the charcoal industry. The national annual consumption of charcoal is estimated at 2.6 million metric tonnes, 75 per cent of which is produced in the ASAL areas. A study in 2005 put the annual charcoal consumption estimated at 1.6 million metric tonnes. This results in an annual consumption of an average of 2 million metric tonnes of unsustainably harvested wood. 3. Charcoal production in Kenya has led to reduction of Kenya’s forest cover. The effect of forest

destruction in Kenya reduces the country's ability to sustain its biodiversity. It also leads to the extinction of a number of bird species and consequent rise in human wildlife conflict. 4. The charcoal industry employs over 700,000 people who support over 2 million dependants. In a

sustainable environment, charcoal producers can earn between Ksh20,000 and Ksh30,000 a month making it a well paying commercial venture for our rural population. 5. Kitil farm is a licensed open quarantine which operates in Kenya. We grow bamboo seedlings from

seed and tissue culture using biotechnology. We have serviced some large bamboo establishment projects around the world with overwhelming success. One of our species is Oxytenanthera abyssinica (solid bamboo) which can produce biomass of 19,000 kg/ha and 9-10 tns of bamboo charcoal per hec per year with rainfall of 350-800 mm. An acre of land will fetch bamboo charcoal worth about Kes 73,000 per year, in an arid region in Kenya. Kitil Farm sells specialised kilns and conduct training on its use. Some local banks like Equity bank and Century Finance have expressed interest to finance the purchase of the kiln by farmers and traders. 6. Uses of bamboo charcoal: Among its many other uses, bamboo charcoal is used to filter drinking

water. It was used during the aftermath of the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
Kitil Farm HQ, Isinya, Kajiando District P.O.Box 762 00606 Sarit Centre, Nairobi, Kenya Tel: +254 787456156, +254 722729630, Fax: +254 2 02701803 E-mail:; Web site:


Health and beauty: Charcoal is a natural exfoliate for the skin that removes dead cells, making

overall appearance healthier both inside and outside. It’s noted that dead skin cells are not good mementos to retain. The dead skin cells easily attract germs, which can easily penetrate the pores and cause infection under the epidermis causing a number of health problems. Regular use of bamboo charcoal based soap or a bath powder is a great way to start. In addition, bamboo charcoal is useful when soaked in bath water. It releases important minerals including calcium, potassium and magnesium that can easily penetrate the skin and enter the bloodstream. It also works really great in maintaining humidity and moisture in the skin. It works much in the same way for the hair. 8. Household uses: In line with maintaining humidity, bamboo charcoal release integral substances to

the air when left at room temperature. These substances help regulate the relative humidity in the house, making a smoother atmosphere and a more comfortable place to live in. 9. Bamboo charcoal is also a perfect air freshener for foul-odor-areas of the house, such as laundry

rooms, waste baskets, trash bins and the sink closets. It can be used as an alternative to baking soda for cleaning things, too. It is put in the fridge to prolong the shelf life of meat and other foodstuffs. When used as a cleaning agent, bamboo charcoal kills bacteria and removes heavy metals from food and other objects. Homeowners use it for filtering waters drinking water. Today water dispensers and purifiers use bamboo charcoal filters. 10. Kitil Farm would like to work with you to development an African Sustainable Charcoal Business

Venture that can be regulated and licensed by the government, contributes to a country’s GDP through tax payment thus making an enormous contribution towards curbing global warming and its devastating effects. Bamboo can create employment, eradicate poverty and hunger. We have over 2.8 million seedlings. Yours sincerely,

J. M. Njuguna CEO, Kitil Farm


Kitil Farm HQ, Isinya, Kajiando District P.O.Box 762 00606 Sarit Centre, Nairobi, Kenya Tel: +254 787456156, +254 722729630, Fax: +254 2 02701803 E-mail:; Web site: