ColdHubs Ltd. designs, installs and operates 100% solar-powered walk-in cold rooms in outdoor markets and farm clusters. The “Hubs” are used by smallholder farmers, retailers and wholesalers to store and preserve fresh fruits, vegetables and other perishable foods 24/7, extending their shelf life from 2 days to 21 days.
Education: We educate farmers, retailers and wholesalers on best practices for the postharvest handling of fruits and vegetables including sorting, grading, packing (using returnable plastic crates), on-farm cooling, and packing houses, as well as best practices in transportation, storage and preservation. This education is provided over 5 days, using local language comic books.
Service: In addition to deploying technology and education, we operate a simple pay-as-you-store model. Farmers and retailers pay 100 Nigerian Naira (equivalent of US$0.50) to store one 20 kg crate per day. Hubs are operated by a Hub Operator, who monitors the loading and unloading of crates, collects the fees, and a Market Attendant who builds customer relationship in farm clusters and markets.
To date, we have installed and commissioned 11 ColdHubs, earning revenue and serving 415 farmers, wholesalers, and retailers. Six of the Hubs are situated in outdoor markets within the south of Nigeria while five are in farm clusters within the north of Nigeria. These 11 Hubs have saved 11,400 tons of food from spoilage and increased the household income of 415 users from US$60 to US$120 per month by reducing the losses.
We have created employment for 22 women, by recruiting and training them to work as Hub Operators and Market Attendants in our 11 installed Hubs.
We’re deploying more hubs each year, serving thousands of new farmers, retailers and wholesalers.