There are many existing projects and technologies converting biomass waste either as fuel or other commodities. However, one fundamental challenge that almost all these projects face is that the various types of biomass waste in rural farms do not always present themselves in satisfactory quality (e.g. moisture content, bulk density) to be economically converted and transported. Frequently it becomes necessary to transport loose biomass waste from afar, which is extremely expensive. For this reason, many biomass conversion projects and technologies have been limited in energy-intensive contexts. We have pioneered a process for low-cost pretreatment and densification of biomass at source (i.e. at the level of small farms where biomass originates). Because this process immediately improves the quality of biomass in terms of shelf life, density, and transportability, it becomes much more economically feasible to source and sell the biomass-based commodities over long distances. This opens up new rural areas with biomass that previously have been deemed too far away to serve as an economic fuel. The creation of new values from low-quality biomass is also expected to increase incomes for distributed small-holder farmers. The team comprises of two MIT MBA students, an MIT PhD student in biomass conversion and renewable energy, as well as a full-time cofounder from Kenya who grew up witnessing the issue of burning biomass in rural Kenya.