Close to 17,000 chili and tea farmers and their families from three villages in Myanmar stand to benefit from the efficient greenhouse dryers that Covestro together with DEG, Bayer CropScience and ASSIST turned over recently, according to a statement on 23 May.
Under the “We Care” project, the greenhouse dryers will help minimize post-harvest losses that the farmers incur when drying farm produce in the traditional way.
We Care is a Public Private Partnership project co-financed by Covestro Thailand Ltd. and DEG. The project aims to provide innovative energy-efficient technology such as greenhouse dryer and cold storage that will benefit farmers in the agriculture and aquaculture sectors.
The greenhouse dryers use polycarbonate sheets, a product of Covestro, which keep the farm produce from getting in direct contact with UV radiation to maintain its natural colour and minerals.
The greenhouse dryer shortens the drying time and reduces labour cost while producing higher quality dried products. The low impurity rate in dried pepper or tea is a major factor in setting the output price of the products.
The enclosed dome shaped greenhouse dryers also protect the chilies or green tea from dust, other elements or wandering animals and livestock during the drying period. Even during rainy days, the farmers can still dry their products inside the dome.
The greenhouse dryers are situated at NgabeKanVillage ,Wuntwin township and Ponnya Village, MyitThar Township for drying of chilies. Another one is in SeeKyaInn Village, Pindaya Township, Shan State for drying of green tea.
“The project aims to create a socio-economic model to promote sustainable economic transformation through food security,” explains VeeralaksmananBagavathi, Head of Inclusive Business of Covestro for Asean. The installed solar drier solutions is seen to benefit more than 16,000 people economically and improve their livelihood thereby essentially over the next years.
“This project will help the selected farming communities manage their crop-drying process cost-efficiently and generate quality-driven revenue, and it matches Bayer CropScience’s dedication to supporting farming communities for building sustainable business,” said Jo Kuriki, General Manager, CropScience Division, Bayer Thai Co., Ltd. Myanmar Branch.
WeCare – Economic Transformation through Food Security project targets to provide opportunities for disadvantaged ASEAN communities in Myanmar, Indonesia and Vietnam, allowing them to gain access to appropriate knowledge and affordable technologies.