Wonderbag founder Sarah Collins from South Africa has already saved enough CO2 emissions to travel the globe 9,452 times with an unbelievably simple innovation - an insulated bag that cooks food even after it has been taken off the stove. Originally devised as a solution for very poor South Africans who scarcely have enough money for food much less the energy and water necessary to cook it, these incredible bags cut fuel use by 30% and give the family's cook extra time to tend to their relatives. Fully recyclable, the cooking bags are so practical and effective that Unilever has already ordered five million of them, and Wonderbag has ambitions to sell enough in the next five years to save 8 million carbon tons annually.
So how does the Wonderbag work? It couldn’t be more simple. Users simply put their pot of food on the stove – it can be a stew, rice, maize meal, or other staples. Once it has been brought to a boil, the pot goes into the highly insulated fabric bag, which is filled with recycled polystyrene, and the bag’s lid is replaced. That’s it. The bag is so well insulated it will continue to cook the food and it requires no supervision at all. In addition to helping each individual enormously by saving on energy use and water, since less evaporation occurs, this incredible product has unbelievable environmental consequences.
Because less harmful fossil fuels are burned for cooking, less carbon dioxide is being emitted into the atmosphere. With Unilever’s purchases of 5 million bags, 2.5 million carbon tons are diverted from the atmosphere each year! The bags last for four years, and Wonderbag has pledged to replace the fully recyclable eco-cooker when that happens. 3 billion people on the planet use dirty fuel for cooking. Imagine the consequences if they each had a Wonderbag? It’s an exciting thought, no?