A radio show host may have fixed Nigeria's worst problem

Story highlights

  • Radio star and entrepreneur launches solar powered fridges for farmers
  • Design will impact hunger, poverty, gender equality and healthcare

(CNN)Almost half of the food produced in the developing world is wasted before it reaches the consumer, largely due to a lack of cold storage.

In Nigeria, the problem is particularly acute as agriculture is by far the largest employer -- accounting for two-thirds of the labor force. The lack of electricity in rural areas makes it fiendishly difficult to keep food cold.
    Enter Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu, a radio presenter and social entrepreneur, with "Cold Hubs" - an enterprise that could transform millions of lives and the entire Nigerian economy.
      The start-up produces walk-in, solar-powered refrigeration units which extend the lifespan of fruit and vegetable produce from two to 21 days. The "Hubs" are designed for use in even the most remote corners of the country. They are simple to operate, and affordable to all.
      Ikegwunou is a farmer himself from the southern state of Imo, who previously founded the Smallholders Foundation -- and its popular radio station -- as a means of empowering rural workers. He believes the design responds to their most urgent need.