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Solar heat driven cold storage for horticultural products

The project aims to deliver a novel 100% solar energy-driven, vacuum insulated cold storage facility for addressing the needs of the Kenyan smallholders. Banana is an important source of income and nutrition accounting for 36% of the fruit produced in Kenya and 11.1% of the total value of domestic horticulture. It contributes to 30-70% of household income of farmers, the majority of whom are women. In 2017, Kenya produced 1.6 million ton banana with a market value of $350m. There are approximately 1 million stakeholders, farmers and subsector employees, who are economically dependent on banana sector. Despite its immense importance in household economics and nutrition value, there is no scientific, climate-controlled storage facility leading to a loss of 25-45% of the banana crop every year. 

At Kenya, level solar energy run cold storage (SolCoS) technology will benefit stakeholders in the banana sector and millions producing other horticultural products. Additionally, this project will unleash an opportunity for solar heat technology in African and global cold storage industry catering to horticulture farmers.

The project is funded through Round 9 of the AgriTech Catalyst which is funded jointly by the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) and Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), delivered by Innovate UK.


Meet the Principal Investigator(s) for the project


Related Research Group(s)

Sustainable Energy Use in Food Chains

Sustainable Energy Use in Food Chains - Energy demand and GHG emissions reduction in all stages of the food chain; optimal ways the food chain can utilise different energy sources and interact with the energy supply system; resource efficiency through intensification of food processing.


Project last modified 19/11/2020