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Biochar

What is Biochar?

Biochar is "organic matter that is carbonised by heating in an oxygen-limited environment, and used as a soil amendment" (IPCC).

A wide range of organic matter can be used to produce biochar, as long as it is renewable. We use agricultural residues which would have otherwise be left to rot or burnt. For example: coffee or cocoa husks and shells; coconut shells and fibers; peanut or cashew shells; palm empty bunches; etc. Biochar's production process is based on pyrolysis, a thermochemical reaction where intense heating in the absence of oxygen breaks down complex molecular chains and rearranges molecular bonds to form a very stable product.

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Benefit to the Planet?

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Biochar is "organic matter that is carbonised by heating in an oxygen-limited environment, and used as a soil amendment" (IPCC). A wide range of organic matter can be used to produce biochar, as long as it is renewable. We use agricultural residues which would have otherwise be left to rot or burnt. 

Benefit to Companies?

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Biochar is "organic matter that is carbonised by heating in an oxygen-limited environment, and used as a soil amendment" (IPCC). A wide range of organic matter can be used to produce biochar, as long as it is renewable. We use agricultural residues which would have otherwise be left to rot or burnt. 

Benefits for Agriculture?

Biochar is used in agriculture as a soil amendement, to be mixed with topsoil and applied only once.The physicochemical properties of biochar allow to improve soil's quality: its high porosity improves the water-holding capacity of soils; its negatively charged surface allows for better nutrient retention; and its high carbon content helps rebalance acidic soils. The result is a durably improved crop productivity and the possibility to switch to 100% organic farming.

Biochar in agriculture is most effective on tropical crops. Jeffery et al. (2017) has shown a global average production increase of +25% in the tropics at a median biochar application rate of 1.5 kg/m2. We provide agricultural training and support to farmers to use the biochar, with the support of Earthworm Foundation.

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