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Ecodudu Limited

The company

Ecodudu is an innovative waste-to-value company operating in Kenya’s agricultural inputs value chains and animal feed industry i.e  high quality, sustainable biomaterials derived from the black soldier fly.

The company produces organic fertilizers and highly nutritious inputs for animal feed by leveraging nature’s recycling agent, the mighty Black Soldier Flies (BSF) whose larvae convert organic waste into nutritious high-protein-dense animal feed. The resulting residues are subsequently processed into environmentally friendly and nutrient rich organic fertilizers.

A strategic partnership with **EcoVineyard** has led to the creation of a state-of-the-art facility that epitomizes Ecodudu’s circular economy model. Here, farm waste is not discarded but transformed into a valuable resource that nourishes the land and supports local agriculture.

The entrepreneurs

Adan Mohamed began his career as a sales agent at an animal feed company which was an eye opener to the feed industry. He started a feed manufacturing company where he later realized the dire need for alternative protein. A discussion with his partner led to further research on BSF rearing and Ecodudu was born. Adan designed and executed a biological process that is modular and optimizable where the rearing system combines seamlessly with the insect life cycle. Adan has a Bachelor’s of Engineering degree from Kenyatta University.

Starlin Farah Co-founder of Ecodudu is a medical Doctor with a Bachelor of Medicine and surgery (MB ChB) from Kenyatta University. She is passionate about Black Soldier Fly and has done extensive research and trials on BSF larvae as an alternative source of protein.

Currently she heads the research on various applications of the insect in pharmaceuticals, water purification and cosmetics and is the Chief Operations Officer at Ecodudu.

“Truvalu isn’t just a partner; they’re our steadfast companions in every step of our journey. Their unwavering support during our toughest times and their commitment to walking alongside us through thick and thin has made our bond stronger than ever. We are happy to see the growth we are undergoing currently” – The entrepreneurs

Impact

A circular solution to food waste
Driven by the food waste crisis and the need for sustainable animal feeds, Ecodudu through BSF farming, creates a circular economy by harnessing the food waste valorising powers of these humble insects to make animal feeds and organic fertilizer. Ecodudu also enhances the circular economy created by BSF farms by valorising byproducts generated through this process that would otherwise be discarded.

 

Ecodudu provides a comfortable and flexible working environment for its employees, operating a competitive and fair remuneration structure.
Waste management; Majority of urban waste is organic, typically more than 50% by volume. And by producing 1 kilo of larvae = 6kgs of organic waste is recycled, hence reduction of CO2 and methane thus promoting a cleaner planet. Next, Ecodudu contributes to decreasing overfishing and reducing the harmful chemical runoff from pesticides (SDG 14); collecting more organic waste (SDG 11); improving soil quality by offering organic fertilizer alternatives (SDG 15); and reducing greenhouse gas emissions & water saved (SDG 13).
With continuous Research & Development and application of new technologies, Ecodudu is able to scale its output with lower costs putting the company in a viable financial position in the long-run. It contributes to increasing agricultural yields & productivity (SDG 2), and more sustainable and circular poultry/animal/fish production (SDG 12).
The provision of affordable high-quality, organic and agricultural inputs helps farmers to improve their yields and revenues as well as reduction in use of harmful chemicals thus promoting a healthy community.
“During the initial DD stage, Truvalu did things that other investors typically don’t do. They built a financial model for us, rather than only questioning it. Next to this, Truvalu facilitated the involvement of technical experts in the development of a strategic plan.” Adan Mohammed and Starlin Farah

Future plans

Expanding their waste to value offering to more farmers and waste producers. Ecodudu hopes to register farmers and other food waste producers looking to reduce losses from waste disposal.

Truvalu helped us solve most of our problems. We now know our strategic needs and steps to get there using the investment. It is great that Truvalu is walking with us to get there.”

Co-entrepreneurship

The challenges Ecodudu is faced with are related to: 

  • Scaling up production of black soldier flies to fully utilize their investments capacity
  • Recovering from a colony collapse in March due to the colony collapsing faster than they could get waste material

The solution provided by Truvalu: 

  • Provided working capital to Ecodudu to finance the scale up. Investment with a significant minority stake. As the lead equity investor Truvalu is now Ecodudu’s long term strategic partner. Truvalu has a board seat to offer strategic advice and act as the lead investor for onboarding new investors;
  • Business development support for instance building of a financial model & a dashboard;
  • Promoting synergies through connections to other businesses in Truvalu’s portfolio & network/ experts. Support to access the market in this case the local market through facilitating synergies with other companies (such as Marula Proteen for their expansion).

Video Ecodudu