Golden Seeds Fats and Oil Ltd has announced its diversification into the production for export and local use of biomass briquettes using palm nut shells said the CEO/co-founder of the company, Mr Lanre. Sam-Akinkunmi.
Sam-Akinkunmi, who revealed this at a Tuesday press conference in Lagos, added that briquette production has immense economic benefits, making it one of the hottest processing industries in which to venture out.
The Nigerian News Agency (NAN) reports that biomass briquettes are a biofuel substitute for charcoal, mainly used in developing countries, where cooking fuels are not readily available to industries and grills.
“We are in the palm oil and palm kernel value chain, where we derive products from the oil palm. Our main activity is the transformation of palm kernels into palm oil and palm kernel meal.
“Recently, we have started to transform our palm kernel hulls into biomass briquettes for industrial applications, grilling, cooking and for local charcoal uses.
“We intend to serve a range of industries with the launch of this product to the market; people who need industrial heating, fireplace and boiler applications, steel ovens, steakhouses, hotels and homes.
“Golden Seeds is ready to support the federal government in its charcoal export policy.
“We are working with the relevant government agencies for export, to enable us to earn forex and develop the economy,” he said.
Sam-Akinkunmi noted that briquette charcoal was a direct substitute for traditional charcoal, describing it as efficient, consistent, sustainable and beneficial for the environment.
“So, from our seashells, we converted directly into the same charcoal; but we have a higher calorific value in terms of calorific value and minimum ash, it is a smokeless fuel that generates a bluish flame.
“Its impact on the environment is renewable and zero. We are testing the product in a few weeks before rolling it out to all retailers and stores.
“We are also striving to bring the product to the export market. We believe the government will look at the product and not see it as a product of the tree.
“We will also be contracting to produce for private labels.
“In addition, we plan to increase our production capacity and help the small farmers, who provide us with the shells.
Sam-Akinkunmi said the company produces 400 metric tons of charcoal briquettes, noting that the charcoal has a high volume market in Nigeria.
“The industry is facing a huge crackdown, especially with the ban on the export of charcoal due to the predominant source of the commodity.”
He said Nigeria was still among the top five charcoal producers in the world but had not been regulated like most parts of the world except America and France.
Sam-Akinkunmi noted that there is a huge market for briquettes and the company is speaking to retailers in Kuwait, Jordan, Oman, the Middle East and North Africa.
“Many North African countries export to Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Lebanon and others.
“Saudi Arabia alone produces about $ 80 million worth of charcoal per year, while South Africa produces about $ 54 million because it has a culture of grills and soul food.
“The shisha app will go well with urban cities in Nigeria like Port Harcourt, Lagos, Abuja, Kano,” said the CEO of the company. (NAN)