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Shudhatta: retrofitting cookstoves for less than $1 to increase energy efficiency

Mumbai, IndiaMumbai, India
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
for profit
Project Stage:
$10,000 - $50,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

For less than $1, our cookstove retrofit can improve energy efficiency and virtually eliminate harmful emissions from firewood stoves. In 2015, we are distributing 48,000 units across India to developing communities. Seeking funding support and distribution partners.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

In rural households, air pollution kills over 4 million people a year and degrades the health of many more. Harmful emissions from inefficient cookstoves and depleted fuel sources call for an innovative solution. Current cookstove programs require a drastic change in traditional cookstove methods, which is not accepted by many villages. Our product features a marginal change with large impact.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Our product is a twisted tape pack that consists of three steel rods formed and twisted. It fits over a cookstove like a pot rest and facilitates better mixing of air and volatile fuel gas. This reduces firewood consumption by 25% and decreases the amount of smoke emitted. Most efficient cookstove programs are insufficient and extremely expensive. Under $1 per unit, our product retrofits into existing cookstove models without any changes or hindrances to the traditional cookstove process that many rural villagers prefer.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Pilot project example: Our team assesses a group of villages interested in the product and begins behavioral/educational workshops. Raw materials are bought and local blacksmiths manufacture the product. Demonstrations are done in the village, marketing materials are distributed, and village advocates help us sell our products at a temporary central facility. Our team also measures the impact by conducting experimental (before and after boiling water tests), and assessments periodically a few months after the dissemination.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Distribute 60 swirlers in 5 villages at $1.00 each. Raised $10,000 to complete prototype development. Received positive feedback from users, who noticed a reduction in emissions, soot, cooking time, and fuel used.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Distribution partners and $10,000 funding for 2nd pilot project (1300 swirlers in Karjat) and $50,000 for first mass-scale distribution. For our pilot project in Karjat, we have already set up the distribution channels and acquired raw materials. We require funds for travel, human resources, and distribution.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Seeking $50,000 grant funding. All of our pilot projects have made a small profit. We use Paul Polak's model: high volume, low margins.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

NGOs and international aid companies offer clean cookstove models, but they are very expensive ($10-$30). For people that live on less than $2 a day, this incurs a large debt for them.

Founding Story

Our founders met at conferences. Our CTO invented the product and all of us have a deep passion for rural development.


Rahul Jaisingh, CEO Barkha Bansal, CTO Elaine Truong, CSO Tejas Kolhe, COO