On West Kilimanjaro Tanzania, there lives a cool Dutch farmer. The tv showed his romances in ‘Farmer wants a wife’. Farming Africa visited him and we present his practical cooling system for vegetables.
Farmer wants a Wife is a British tv format that has already 30 localised versions around the world. One of them was Wim van Liere, who lives on the slopes of the Kilimanjaro. On TV we could see the idyllic scenery. Farming Africa visited his place and I can tell you: the romance is still there, but there are some practical doubts. I tell you all about it in my story in TPO Magazine, which is also published on Blendle. There I also tell you about what an adventure it is to travel there in this remote area during rainy season. As well as about the lodge and of course the farm that covers an area of 2550 hectare where grains and export seed beans are grown. Even more details about this you will find in Boerderij Vandaag.
On this place, I want to show you a practical solution I saw on this farm, for storing vegetables under warm conditions. Yes, also on an altitude of 1.800 meters it can become pretty warm, although not above 30 degrees Celsius. However, those temperatures are high enough to reduce the quality of vegetables in a short period. The cooling unit of this famous Dutch farmer that’s situated next to the vegetable nursery covers an area of 30 square meters. The walls consist of charcoal, bound together by nettings. On these walls, water is dripped. The charcoal increases the evaporation surface. And it is the evaporation that extracts heat from the surroundings, whit a cooling effect inside the unit.
When it’s a little windy, the system works even better, explains Wim. ‘Usually it stays about three to five degrees cooler inside the unit.’ And another advantage: ít prevents the vegetables from drying, because they remain in an environment with high humidity. It’s not difficult to spread the water manually, but it can also be pumped with energy from solar panels. To save water, this can be collected under the walls in a gutter, so that it can be circulated. For more in formation on a charcoal cooler, don’t forget to take a look over here. © Marc van der Sterren | Farming Africa