A watermelon does not ripen further after it is harvested. If it is not sufficiently sweet, it will not sell well. Many large international producers flood local markets with melons that cannot be shipped overseas. This makes it impossible for small farmers to grow and compete in the lucrative international water melon market. With the melon ripeness tester, a small farmer can harvest a water melon at its optimum and therefor compete in the international market. The tester is based on a near infrared technology that is currently developed in Berkeley California. Once fully developed, a tester would cost less than $5.
Currently, several large multinational corporations grow watermelons in Africa and other continents. These a spot tested during harvest and then either shipped overseas, or discarded through local markets, if not destroyed all together. Small local farmers have no competitive edge unless they have a way to detect the sugar content of a watermelon, harvest the fruit at its optimal and then sell through various channels that value small scale farming. Water melons are highly profitable.
WHERE WILL YOUR IDEA BE IMPLEMENTED?
This idea will be implemented in Rwanda, but eventually the tool is available to any potential small farmer that wishes to grow watermelon. This tool would transform the lucrative international watermelon market that is now ruled by multinationals
ARE YOU IMPLEMENTING IN AN ELIGIBLE COUNTRY?
EXPERTISE IN SECTOR
I’ve worked in a sector related to my idea for over a year
EXPERIENCE IN IMPLEMENTATION COUNTRY(IES)
Yes, for more than one year.
TELL US MORE ABOUT YOU!
I am an agricultural economist working in a team of engineers in Berkeley California. Our laboratory has been labeled "invention central" as we develop highly specialized tools for various industries. The idea of a water melon ripeness tester came about 6 years ago.
General outline of the tool.
A small tool hugs the watermelon and measures the sugar content instantly, letting the farmer know if it is ripe. There is no other non-invasive system that tests the sweetness of a watermelon.