April 15,2019,Nairobi.Isuzu East Africa has unveiled their first ever locally assembled Cold Chain logistic vehicles that are improvised to support farmers, hoteliers and a diversity of retailers in transportation of temperature –sensitive farm produce or products from factories to consumers in an entire supply chain with the aim of quality preservation.
It is estimated that fresh produce losses occur at an average of between 20 to 30 percent during transportation from the farms to the market and it is for this reason Isuzu EA in collaboration with Sai Raj and Specialized Fibre Glass that are vehicle accessories suppliers developed the cold storage vehicles to mitigate the fresh produce losses. The introduction of these cold chain logistic vehicles has led to a tremendous reduction of the cost incurred when purchasing refrigerated and insulate reefer bodies saving about Ksh 300,000 to Ksh 1,000,000 in some of the vehicles. The preservation and storage efficiencies raised to these vehicles will bring a positive impact on producer revenues and profitability.
Speaking during the first interactive forum on Isuzu Cold Chain Solutions, the sales and marketing Director, Mr. Wanjohi Kangangi said that the introduction of these vehicles will support the Big 4 Agenda on food security by addressing post-harvest losses experienced by farmers and retailers while improving food safety, hygiene and quality.
“It is our excitement to introduce these vehicles that will help farmers and retailers reduce their post-harvest losses, increase profitability and ensure Kenyans get quality farm produce consistently,”Mr.Wanjohi said. He added that they have enough confident that their cold chain solution will address the lack of affordable and practical heat insulated trucks which necessitates the adoption of practices such as overnight transport and as Isuzu EA they are keen to introduce innovative ways to support the government in realization of its Big 4 Agenda for the country.
“We are contributing to the Big 4 Agenda whereby cold chain is plugging in the gap left after post-harvest losses and also ensuring people get quality food products that are healthy thus a key point in matters related to health that is part of the government’s agenda,” the Sales and Marketing Director said.
The trucks have temperature control unit where one can adjust temperatures at the touch of a button from the comfort of driver’s seat with real time monitoring. This monitoring helps in provision of data about temperature that can be printed using a printer that is also fixed inside the vehicle.
The body of the trucks is insulated to prevent transfer of heat or temperatures inside the truck and can be able to maintain and retain ambient temperature conditions. This makes the integrity of the products being transported remain constant regardless of where the location of the truck. They have sensors that monitor the temperatures, more so the performance and movement of the truck.
“High value agricultural produce is generally grown for national and international markets thus it is highly dependent on efficient transport. The solutions provided by Isuzu East Africa feature temperature controls ranging from 50 C to -50 C for chilling products such as flowers, milk and meat, -50 C to -180 C for preserving products such as seafood and -180 C to -300 C for freezing products like ice creams,” the General manager Supply and Chain Market, Kelvin Ochieng’ explained when making a presentation during the interaction forum at Isuzu EA offices. According to Ochieng’, these will help ease the pressure on farmers and suppliers who rely on 3am late night temperatures to transport their produce to the market so as to retain their quality which probable is not met.
Increased volume capacity per tonne, global quality packaging standards, fuel efficiency and easier working hours are some of the other benefits to be experienced by retailers and distributors who will purchase the vehicles which have already been tested and are in working conditions.