Create a high-tech solution for vanilla farming at post harvest stage to increase the quality and shelf life of vanilla.
Vanilla is a labor-intensive crop, that requires the beans to be hand-pollinated, picked, and fermented. Vanilla beans are first sorted and are continually inspected and evaluated on their aroma and the quality during the processing. Eventually, the finished vanilla beans are sorted again according to quality parameters.
Low productivity and value capture at the farm level are significant barriers to vanilla being a viable agriculture livelihood for farmers in Uganda. Vanilla yields and overall productivity per hectare for farmers in Uganda are well below the industry standards. One of the reasons might due to lacking proper tools to support post harvest management.
Traditionally vanilla beans are stored in wood boxes to preserve the beans from sunlight and moisture, which means that the vanilla beans can not be inspected constantly and thus increases the risk of decaying.
The high-tech solution focuses on postharvest handling of vanilla. The first problem that is being addressed is the storage. The solution aims at providing farmers with an Internet of Things technology to ensure that all aspects of storage are covered and able to be monitored, creating optimized conditions required for the preservation of vanilla beans. This will lead to improving competitiveness and performance of local vanilla chain actors.