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the untapped market for solar cookers

report shows a potential $1.8 billion annual market

michael grupp at synopsis has recently completed an report which estimates the potential market for solar cookers, as well as the potential savings of fuelwood. two solar cooker models are used in this estimate: a "base model," costing the equivalent of us$50; and an "elaborate model" costing us$300.

assuming that proper supply of cookers and accessible credit schemes for poor families, synopsis estimates that 50% of the world's approximately 333,000,000 fuelwood-using families would buy one of the two models. accounting for seasonal usage patterns, the average family would realize a 60% fuelwood savings, amounting to a total annual fuelwood savings of 346,000,000 tons. the pay-back period varies from four months in the case of the "base model" in areas of expensive fuelwood, to 69 months for the "elaborate model" in areas with "normal" fuelwood prices.

what particularly stands out from the report is that there is a large potential unmet market for solar cookers. the "replacement market" for both models combined amounts to us$1.8 billion annually, assuming in a useful life of 10 years for each cooker.

for more information contact synopsis, route d'olmet, f-34700 lodeve, france.

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