Ghanaian Social Entrepreneur Is Championing Waste Recovery And Helping Cassava Farmers Combat Post-harvest Losses
Maxwell Deladem Xonu, in his capacity to ensure an eco-friendly environment, has built EBAPreneur. EBAPreneur is a social enterprise that focuses on two things; promoting positive impacts on climate and helping local farmers combat post-harvest losses.
Before EBAPreneur was established, the Ghanaian entrepreneur and his team received support from the United Nations Environment Program, Nairobi. Maxwell stated that the patrons of the program trained and equipped them with the necessary skills to produce briquettes and fabricate solar driers. After acquiring the necessary skills, the young social entrepreneur set on to build one of the innovative agricultural value chain enterprises in the country.
Founded in 2019, EBAPreneur produces briquettes from wastes such as corn husk, cassava and potato peels, and sawdust. Additionally, the startup fabricates solar driers from locally sourced materials to help farmers reduce post-harvest losses. The solar driers create a suitable temperature for drying harvested farm produce, such as cassava, faster without any atmospheric disturbance.
Maxwell focused on the two products because briquettes are cheap, last longer than charcoal, lessen pressure on trees, and release little to no soot into the atmosphere. Also, post-harvest loss is a major risk factor in the production of cassava which has led to the decline in figures for most farmers. They have tried to minimize the situation by providing traditional approaches to combat the deterioration, yet, they achieved nothing.
Concerning this, Maxwell and his team have successfully mounted solar driers in two regions for its pilot phase. They have done so in Apegusu and Akotikrom in the Volta and Eastern regions respectively.
“ 60% of Ghanaians still use firewood and charcoal for cooking due to economic challenges. 1% use electricity and below 2% use LPG. We want the statistics to change and that is what I believe EBAPreneur is championing,” Maxwell stated.
This month, Maxwell and his team were adjudged winners of the Israeli Green Innovation Competition, an initiative that supports sustainable green innovation initiatives by young Ghanaian startups.
EBAPreneur was selected as the winner of the keenly contested final against four others based on the originality of their solution, social impact ability, environmental friendliness, sustainability, and ease of use.
Maxwell received a fully-paid trip to Israel to participate in industry-related conferences, learn best practices, network, and seek potential investors to expand his existing business.