Project overview

Takachar helps reduce the impacts of climate change; it created a portable machine that attaches to tractors and turns crop waste into sellable bioproducts like fuel and fertilizer. Takachar's innovation has won a variety of recognition, including Prince William's Earthshot Prize and the XPRIZE Carbon Removal competition funded by Elon Musk and the Musk Foundation.

The problem

Globally, US $120 billion worth of crop residues (biomass) is burned in the open air each year.

Many farmers burn their crop residues to eliminate waste from the previous harvest; these residues may be loose, wet, bulky, and too expensive to collect and transport to a centralized place for conversion into valuable products. As a result, the open burning of farm waste impacts the environment and is also an economic loss.

Photo: WFP/Marwa Awad
The solution

Takachar brings a small-scale, low-cost, portable machine that can be loaded into the back of tractors and deployed to farms.

Crop residues are fed into the machine and roasted in a controlled way that prevents particulate matter, volatile matter, CO and NOx emissions, turning the crop residues on-site into valuable bioproducts such as biofuel, fertilizer and activated carbon.

This innovative system is auto-thermal and requires no external fuel or heat, making it cost-effective. Moreover, Takachar broadens smallholder farmers' livelihood and business prospects to generate additional income by selling these on-demand bioproducts on the market.

The way forward

Throughout the WFP Sprint Programme, Takachar enables smallholder farmers in India to process their crop residues, such as rice straws, into fertilizers at the farm gate. 

The project prevents harmful air pollution from the open burning of 3 metric tonnes of rice straws per farmer per acre per harvest season. This will convert into an increase in smallholder farmers' net income by up to 30 percent, and the increased yield of farms using fertilizers produced by Takachar machines by up to 30 percent.


Last updated: 07/11/2022