ColdHubs, a Nigerian startup is set to open solar-powered cold room hubs across Rwanda, Kenya and Benin among other markets on its expansion plan.
Cold rooms are used for storing temperature-sensitive, perishable items, such as food items and pharmaceutical products like vaccines, genetic and blood samples among others.
The company said that after launching 40 more hubs to reach 72 solar-powered cold rooms in home country Nigeria they plan to expand to key markets on the continent.
ColdHubs operates by building cold rooms in market places- which are self-operated in outdoor markets – as well as mobile refrigerated trucks, so that sellers at a fee can store their unsold products for some days until they are ready to sell them.
The company’s media relations’ officer said recently, that some of the new buses will serve farm clusters in remote areas of the country and concurrently, the company will expand to Rwanda, Benin, Kenya and more African countries.
The company recently won the $2 million 2022 Food Planet Prize by The Curt Bergfors Foundation, the world’s biggest award in the environmental and food sectors.
Chinedu Hardy Nwadike, one of the ColdHubs Communication officers said that winning the prize will enable the Nigerian startup to expand.
“It is basically more work for us because it means that we have to make our technology better; to go for a better technology than the one we have before and also have to follow our expansion dream to achieve every other thing we have set in line for ourselves,” Nwadike said in an exclusive interview with WorldstageTelevision on January 17, 2023.
Impact Point in Rwanda
This business model that uses solar energy will complement Rwanda’s initiatives to reduce post-harvest loss while increasing green energy and cut on carbon emissions but add on major existing storage facilities aimed at reducing postharvest waste.
Rwanda has a 500-square meters mega cold storage facility run by DP World in Kigali, the Rwanda Cold Centre of excellence aimed at driving the 2019 Rwanda Cooling Strategy implemented by Rwanda Cooling Initiative (RCOOL) and with partners’ support established cold storage rooms at across border markets.
Post-harvest losses, accounting for more than 40 per cent of potatoes, fruits, vegetables and other perishables lost before reaching the consumers are a major impediment to the development and transformation of the African agricultural sector.