Blockchain startup sells $25K rigs so farmers can mine crypto with bullshit
A UK crypto mining startup wants farmers to turn their cow manure into digital cash.
Manchester-based Easy Crypto Hunters claims to help financial situations of British farmers in post-Brexit limbo.
In a promotional video, chief exec Josh Riddett promises a “very nice passive income from plugging in some posh computers.”
In this case, the posh computers are £18,000 ($25,000) NVIDIA-powered Ethereum miners to be purportedly fuelled by animal waste.
Indeed, Easy Crypto Hunter wants farmers to “diversify land” by buying its pre-packaged rig to plug into their existing green energy infrastructure.
The idea is that they could sell crypto they mine for more than what the grid would pay for their surplus energy.
Mining shitcoins, literally
Crypto has long attracted negative attention for its energy-intensive Proof-of-Work consensus, leveraged by top blockchains Bitcoin and Ethereum, among others.
- The process of turning animal waste into usable energy is called “anaerobic digestion.”
- Bacteria in special reactors breaks down the poop, producing methane.
- Methane gas powers a generator that powers another generator for the crypto miners.
As for what farmers get for forking over $25,000: a rig housed in a custom computer case, between 6 and 12 GPUs on “specialist mining motherboards,” a fan-powered cooling system, and a year’s warranty.
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Easy Crypto Hunters also sells parts individually, but warns: “when buying a mining case you should be comfortable with building a mining rig yourself,” (our emphasis).
“With just our mining cases you don’t receive any advice on how to build the units.”
Returns took a hit alongside crypto
Easy Crypto Hunters’ head of comms Jordan Harris told Protos the company currently has its rigs on more than 40 farms across the UK, with about 500 orders outstanding.
Harris said their machines make on average between $50 and $60 per day over the past six months — more than what they’d get by selling the energy back to the grid ($0.06 to $0.10 per kilowatt hour).
One of the company’s video posted last July claimed its customers made 72% return on investment (ROI) over the previous year.
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Harris noted 12-month ROI had dropped 35% since crypto markets collapsed earlier this year.
In any case, farmers looking to take the Easy Crypto Hunter gambit will need to wait.
Harris said new customers should expect delays up to 25 weeks (over half a year) for their orders due to persistent GPU shortages worldwide.