The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has an incredibly ambitious and important mission. They seek to eradicate (or drastically reduce) the spread of disease in the world. One of the ways the foundation is using its substantial resources is in developing better sanitation systems for the billions of people across the planet who lack access to modern plumbing (wrap your head around the scale of that problem for just a second).
Here's a quote from a Fast Company story on the topic that puts it in even sharper terms:
"Only 4.5 billion people in the world have access to clean toilets. That
may sound like a lot, but compare that to a different statistic: 6 billion people
have access to cell phones. This lack of toilets is a major cause of
sanitation-related diseases, which is why the Gates Foundation has long worked to promote the cause of better toilets for the developing world."
Turns out, though, that in order to build a better toilet, you need to build better fake poop to facilitate the testing process. Enter Maximum Performance, the synthetic feces manufacturer of choice for your discerning billionaire foundation leader. As part of its broader toilet development and testing mission, MaP developed a soybean paste and rice mix that's a more than reasonable facsimile for poop. Says, Fast Company:
"The Gates Foundation procured 50 gallons of fake poop for its Reinvent
the Toilet Fair, flushing it down all sorts of new kinds of commodes.
When MaP isn't supplying feces for developing world toilet prototypes,
it performs "flush performance" tests on all sorts of conventional
That's some powerful shit.