How might we enable cooled transport in Western Kenya to reduce food losses?
In many regions in Kenya there is a lack of transport for farmers' harvest to the markets in the country's urban centres. With the few transports that exist and missing cooling options, a large part of the goods is lost, spoiled or damaged. A lot of the farmers' output is therefore never sold or used. So while food is becoming scarce in the cities, the farmers in rural areas struggle to transport and sell their harvest. With the COVID-19 pandemic and measures to counteract its spread, supply constraints have even been exacerbated.
We identified two main sub-challenges:
Since fish is extremely delicate and spoils fast, a continuous cold-chain during transport and storage has to be ensured. This is difficult for farmers and vendors to achieve when selling fish from lake Victoria to the distant urban centres of Kisumu and Nairobi. However, this is where most individual and commercial customers like hotels and restaurants are.
Only few fish farmers can invest in an ice machine to be able to cool their fish with ice cubes. Therefore, for most fishermen to be able to sell their produce without a loss in quality and quantity, they need access to cold storage facilities, cooled transport and direct contact to the customers.
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