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Sistema Biobolsa: Addressing Challenges of Climate Change, Sustainable Agriculture and Waste Management in Mexico

Sistema Biobolsa: Addressing Challenges of Climate Change, Sustainable Agriculture and Waste Management in Mexico
Case Code: LDEN166
Case Length: 18 Pages
Period: 2007-2019
Pub Date: 2021
Teaching Note: Available
Price: Rs.500
Organization : Sistema Biobolsa
Industry : Energy
Countries : Mexico
Themes: Social Entrepreneurship, Social Enterprise, Socially-responsible Business Practices
Sistema Biobolsa: Addressing Challenges of Climate Change, Sustainable Agriculture and Waste Management in Mexico
Abstract Case Intro 1 Case Intro 2 Excerpts

Abstract

The case chronicles the innovation in bio-digester technology by Alex Eaton and Camilo Pages through a social enterprise in Mexico called ‘Sistema Biobolsa’. It describes how the two social entrepreneurs created an innovative new waste and resource management system by reimagining the 150-year old biogas production system by using a high-quality membrane, durable modular parts, and anaerobic bio-digesters that transformed animal waste into renewable energy (bio-gas) and organic fertilizer.Sistems Biobolsa addressed several challenges that small and marginal farmers in Mexico and across the world faced – low yielding land due to excessive use of chemical fertilizers, lack of organic fertilizers, unviable waste disposal methods, and limited access to energy. Sistema Biobolsa converted organic waste into organic fertilizer and renewable energy. Its impact was manifold. With an investment of US$ 600, a farmer with two cows could save upto US$ 40 per month in the cost of fuel and fertilizers. The biogas produced was environmentally friendly, reduced methane emissions, resulted in better waste management, reduced deforestation, protected the soil, and also improved the quality of life of the farmers.To cater to the needs of different farmers, the bio-digesters were available in several sizes and could be installed within a few hours. After the first month, the farmers could start using the system. The company provided loans to farmers to install the system, and also extended technical support to them in using it.Eaton expanded into Kenya, Colombia, Nicaragua, and India, but, there were still many issues that he needed to address. He had to improve distribution to reach more than 4 million small farmers in Mexico. He was looking at making a huge impact to address the issues of global warming and climate change. But, can a small venture in Mexico be scaled up to address these huge global problems?

Issues

The case is structured to achieve the following teaching objectives:

  • Social Entrepreneurship and different types of social entrepreneurs.
  • Bottom of the Pyramid, Inclusive Business models, and Sustainable business models.
  • Business models to meet the needs of the rural poor in developing countries.
  • Impact of social enterprises.

Contents

Keywords

inclusive business; sustainable agriculture; Waste management; biogas; organic fertilizer; deforestation; social entrepreneurship; Bottom of the pyramid; sustainable business; social enterprise; climate change; bio digester;

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