Kukua Labs develops energy-efficient, solar-ready appliances that improve energy access and incomes of off-grid families in resource limited settings
Increasingly, families living beyond the reach of reliable grid power are able to light their homes thanks to the spread of small-scale home-solar options. Kukua Labs believes these solar systems can do more than provide light, they can economically support a family. We partner with solar organizations that provide small solar panel and storage battery systems to provide income-generating, or “productive use,” appliances to their customers. Productive use appliances benefit the solar provider, ensuring monthly payments are met, while having happy customers. Kukua Labs serves the rural and peri-urban families, who already have a variety of ways to make money, and builds solar appliances to enhance these daily activities.
Our first productive appliance targets poultry farmers. Abundant, minimal input, and nutritious – chickens supplement a farming family’s diet and income, and represent an important store of value, much like a bank account. Lacking a way to predictably grow their flock, millions of farmers seek an affordable, off-grid means of maintaining and growing their chicken investments.
A quick and effective way to grow the size of a chicken flock is through artificial incubation. The Kukua incubator enables farmers who lack conventional electrical-grid access to reliably hatch chicks in their own home by making artificial incubation solar-power-compatible. Emphasizing energy efficiency and hatch success, Kukua incubator can operate on less power than it takes to charge a cell phone, while delivering equivalent hatch rates to those of a careful mother hen. The incubator can be powered continuously from a battery system as small as 150Wh, with reserves for bouts of cloudy weather.
Kukua is a money-making machine for the large majority of off-grid farmers who raise chickens. Artificial incubation with Kukua affords farmers independence over the hatching process, increased revenue, and greater financial stability compared to their otherwise meager and volatile chicken farming income.
Our goal is to have the Kukua incubator widely available to allow farmers to be more financially secure because they can depend upon their chicken farming as a steady income.