• Kenyans are feeling economic heat with the ever-rising fuel prices. From high pump prices to the rising cost of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), commonly known as cooking gas, it is a rough ride for many. 

    Starting July 1, 2021, the government introduced the 16 percent value-added tax on cooking gas. Today, 6 kilograms of the commodity goes for an average of Ksh1,300 while a cylinder of 13 kilograms will cost an average of Ksh2,500. 

    With the high cost of living, most people are looking for ways to save a coin or two. So, what should one do to cut on their cooking gas consumption and bills? Here are simple tips to consider. 

    total
    Total Gas Cylinders being sold in Nairobi in January 2020.
    NMG

    Cover food when cooking 

    Zephaniah Kavungi an energy expert states, “Simple methods such as covering your pot with a tight lid helps in minimising consumption of your cooking gas. The more covered your cooking pot is the less gas you are likely to use, if you can,cover your pot properly to stop any steam from escaping. The steam prepares food faster than the original heat coming from the gas cooker.”

    Food soaking

    For foods such as cereals including beans, and green grams, since they take time to be ready, soak beforehand to reduce time spent in cooking which in turn minimises gas consumption. 

    Type of flame used

    Always use the blue flame (non-luminous) to reduce the rate of combustion. A yellow flame tends to consume more gas during combustion while producing less heat and releasing unburned gas.

    Type of sound your gas is producing

    A noisy gas simply means that the gas is forcing itself out when it’s not burning. Therefore, your gas cylinder is likely to consume more gas. 

    Avoid heating food ahead of time

    Always give time for food to warm using the environment temperature before heating using your gas cooker.

    Avoid heating chilled food

    Frozen food tend to have low temperatures which therefore take more time and gas to break down the components 

    Behaviour

    How much are you losing in the process of food preparation? This applies to time spent preparing ingredients as you cook. One should plan ahead and have all the ingredients ready to minimise time spent in preparation when cooking, which will in turn reduce the amount of gas one uses.

    Police officers stand guard at a cooking gas refilling plant in Karatina, Nyeri County
    Police officers stand guard at a cooking gas refilling plant in Karatina, Nyeri County
    Daily Nation

    Type of pot you are using

    Preferably use pressure cookers over ordinary cooking pots. If you cannot afford, always ensure that you add weight on top of your lid to contain the steam.

    Pricing gas cylinders 

    Tito Makau, a gas supplier based in Thika, Kiambu County spoke to Muhabarishaji.com on the factors they consider when pricing gas cylinders.  

    “The distance between the gas sellers and the supplier, is a very crucial factor when determining the prices of the gas cylinders because the further they are the more expensive it becomes, security of the place is also a factor to be considered, as we also have to be careful of where we trade,” stated Makau.

    “Pricing between the supplier and the gas vendors is also a factor we consider, different brands have different price charges depending on whether they are multinational companies or regional companies, therefore different gas cylinders are likely to cost differently,” he remarked.