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Press release: Competition to stimulate off-grid cold chain technology launched

The Global LEAP Off-Grid Cold Chain Challenge (OGCCC) – a competition to develop innovative and energy-efficient off-grid cold storage technology – launched today in Nairobi, Kenya. Part of the UK Department for International Development’s (DfID) Ideas to Impact programme, the OGCCC will offer £250,000 in prizes for off-grid cold chain technologies deployed in select Sub-Saharan African countries. 
Cold storage facilities are a crucial link in the chain from farmer to table, and ensure that food products such as fruit, vegetables, and dairy products stay fresh with minimal waste. In developing countries, extensive and reliable cold storage is often out of reach for the most vulnerable groups in the chain – small-hold farmers and small traders – due to cost and a lack of access to reliable electricity.Innovation prizes will be awarded to cold storage technologies that demonstrate energy efficiency, off-grid appropriateness, scalability, and commercial feasibility of deployment. The goal of the competition is to stimulate innovation and investment in the sector and help to drive market development,bringing prices down for those who need it most.“Lack of proper temperature management and cold storage causes farmers in off-grid areas to suffer significant post-harvest food loss, leading to reduced profits and increased vulnerability. A commercially sustainable cold chain would allow farmers to diversify production to include high-value perishable crops, link them to regional and international markets, and increase earnings. In addition, cold chain facilities would create opportunities for labour, services, and value-added processing for perishable products,” says Simon Collings, Energy Access Technical Lead, Energy 4 Impact. Establishing extensive and reliable cold chains in developing countries, where food losses for farmers during post-harvest and processing can be as high as 40%, would enable them to raise food supply by 15% – about 250 million tonnes.The OGCCC has been developed in partnership with Energy 4 Impact with support from Ideas to Impact, a DfID-funded programme that uses innovation prizes to stimulate solutions to development challenges across energy access, climate change adaptation and water, sanitation and hygiene, and Power Africa’s Beyond the Grid initiative. For more information, visit the OGCCC webpage or sign up* for competition updates. MEDIA CONTACT: Sam Grant, Africa Regional Lead, CLASP, sgrant@clasp.ngo  or +254700328273 Nairobi, Kenya 
*The Sign Up form link may not work on the first try, please give it 2-3 chances. 

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