Solar Crop Dryer for Climate Resilience at Grenada Cocoa Association Drying Station (Phase II)
* Quality Assured Data from SGP’s Annual Monitoring Process as of June 30, 2021.
Solar Crop Dryer for Climate Resilience at Grenada Cocoa Association Drying Station (Phase II)
BACKGROUND SUMMARY
(ii) What are the causes of the problem or challenge? (iii) What are the project goal, objectives and outcome? (iv) What is the strategy and activities you will be implementing? (v) What is the total budget and how it is being financed? (vi) Who will benefit? (vii) How will the project be monitored evaluated and the lessons learned disseminated?

The Grenada Cocoa Association (GCA) requests support from the Global Environment Facility in the amount of USD $89,593 to pilot solar crop drying technology at Mt. Horne cocoa drying station in St.
Andrew’s, Grenada. This pilot project will be used to inform potential interest in additional solar dryers throughout the island. As the cornerstone of agriculture in Grenada, building resilient technology in the cocoa industry is of strategic importance to the country.

Traditionally, Grenadian cocoa farmers have dried their beans outdoors, under the sun (“passive drying”). However, changing weather conditions in recent years—including heavy rains during traditionally dry seasons—are forcing farmers to rely more on indoor, “active drying,” in which air is heated and blown across the beans.

The GCA currently runs two active drying facilities, at Mr. Horne and Carlton, in St. Andrew’s Parish. Both of these facilities use diesel-powered burners. As the GCA is forced to rely more on active drying, the problems associated with diesel burners are becoming more apparent: diesel fuel costs approximately $30,000XCD per high season, it creates air pollution, and it has the potential to contaminate cocoa beans if the drying process is not carefully controlled.

The proposed project would allow the GCA to pilot a solar drying system at Mt. Horne, the largest drying station. This technology is a sustainable method using alternative, clean energy to increase capacity and create resilient infrastructure to increase the production of cocoa on which thousands of farmers, families and station workers rely. If evaluative data shows the dryer is successful, the GCA would like to pursue additional solar dryers throughout the island as a later project.

Program Description and Goals
The goal of the proposed project is to increase Grenada’s cocoa drying capacity in a clean, sustainable, cost-effective manner in order to create resilience against climate change. This will ultimately invigorate the cocoa industry by creating a dependable marketplace for farmers. GEF funding will be used to purchase a custom-built solar crop drying system, hire and train local workers in solar technology installation, train station employees to run the system, and monitor the success of the new technology.

Budget
The proposed budget for this project is USD $88,492, including cash and in-kind co-funding from the grantee and with the GEF contributing USD $54,122.

Who will benefit
The cocoa farmers will be the primary beneficiaries. The GCA is a cooperative of cocoa farmers with a mission to secure and protect a viable market for cocoa. The cooperative will benefit from increased capacity and decreased fuel costs, which will stabilize the funding source with which they compensate farmers for their harvest and provide extension services. By stabilizing the revenue and processing, the GCA can focus more resources on other new initiatives, such as establishing a cohort of certified organic farmers.

Evaluation
Cocoa from the solar dryer will be tested and compared to cocoa from diesel and passive dryers in terms or efficiency (time to process) and moisture level. This data will be used to inform evaluate the success of this pilot project to determine if solar dryers could build resilient technology and capacity throughout the island.

Conclusion
In the face of changing weather conditions, Grenadian cocoa growers are relying more on active drying technologies. Under these circumstances, it makes sense to invest in clean, cost-effective alternatives to the existing fuel-burning systems. Given current initiatives to promote sustainable practices among farmers and encourage youth to consider farming, solar dryers are an essential way to advance traditional methods, become resilient to changing weather patterns and expand an industry on which thousands of Grenadians rely.
 
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Project Snapshot

Grantee:
Grenada Cocoa Association
Country:
Grenada
Area Of Work:
Biodiversity
Climate Change Mitigation
Grant Amount:
US$ 54,122.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 25,030.00
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 31,580.00
Project Number:
GRD/SGP/OP5/Y6/CORE/CC/18/11
Status:
Satisfactorily Completed

Grantee Contact

Mr System Administrator
 

Address

Kirani James Boulevard
St. George's ,

SGP Country office contact

Ms. Kadijah Paula Edwards
Phone:
14734201540
Email:

Address

P.O. Box 3486
St. George's