Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu of the Smallholders Foundation in Nigeria will improve his Box-in-a-Truck design for extending the lifespan of cassava, which is a major staple food grown by women smallholder farmers, to decrease labor costs associated with cassava processing. Cassava spoils within 24 hours of harvesting, and the traditional method of prolonging life by leaving the crops longer in the ground reduces the nutritional content. He has designed a small, manually transportable truck containing a wire box that is surrounded by moist sawdust and can hold 145 pieces of cassava. This Box in a Truck is inexpensive and can be locally manufactured and maintained. Initial tests showed that cassava stored in this way lasted the duration of the 16 day study period and retained more nutrients than when it is left in the ground. He will test extended time spans and optimize parameters for use, and then field-test the device for its capacity to save labor and its suitability for local conditions across different seasons using 200 women smallholder farmers.
More information about Labor Saving Strategies and Innovations for Women Smallholder Farmers (Round 11)