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Gricd: This Start-up is Solving the Last-mile Logistics Problem in Agriculture and Healthcare

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Annually, commercial farmers, or simply, individuals, who have invested in farm produce for sale are most often, caught up in the web of getting their perishable agricultural commodities, from the farms to the consumers.

A large proportion of these farms produce, rotten away, before getting to their final destinations, therefore, both farmers and investors, usually, lose a substantial amount of revenues from this.

Perishable farm products should be well stored and transported, in the right conditions, to keep the food cycle up and running.

The requirement for some healthcare products too that, requires certain temperature levels maintained, for the products to be potent enough until use, however, lose their potency, due to the current power situation in the country.

These healthcare products, also, need to be well maintained, at those specified temperatures, to make them effective, for human consumption.

Like several people interested in agriculture, Oghenetega Iortim, invested in transporting perishable agricultural commodities.

The Gricd Team

In the process, he realised the minimal security and transparency during the storage of these perishable commodities, from the point of production, (farmers), to last-mile consumers, putting investors at the potential risk, of experiencing loss and minimal, or no return on investment.

Considering this development, Oghenetega Iortim, came up with the idea Gricd, a healthcare start-up that has built IoT-powered refrigeration solutions, for preserving and transporting agricultural and healthcare products, in locations without power infrastructure.

Oghenetega Iortim is, the Co-Founder/CEO of Gricd and has spent 7 years, post-graduation, managing multiple software development projects that have processed, over $1 Million in annual revenue and he has worked on technology development initiatives, across multiple industries, including Power, Manufacturing, Agriculture, Oil and Gas.

“There are 19.4 million infants, globally, who do not have access to life-saving vaccines. In the same vein, 55% of perishable vegetable commodities, never reach the last mile consumer, largely, because of ineffective, or in some cases, non-existent cold chain systems, during storage and transportation of these temperature-sensitive commodities.

The result is that these commodities, reach their destination, in damaged condition, leading to loss of investment and may cause potential harm to lives that depend on them”, Iortim stated.

Gricd, therefore, builds rechargeable and track-able cold boxes, to provide stable conditions, for storing and transporting temperature-sensitive commodities, at temperatures of up to -20 degrees, to locations without reliable power supply.

Inside Gricd office

Using IoT, (Internet of Things), the conditions of these commodities can be monitored, anywhere in the world, from the comfort of a mobile device.

“From coolers that store medications and enable vaccination outreach, in remote locations, to cooling vans that transport harvest, from the farm to the consumer, the cold chain is, a crucial part of our lives, from production to the last mile.

But with challenges, such as unreliable power supply, or using coolers and ice packs in humid weather, the cold chain needs reliable autonomous cold chain solutions, for the last mile.

Starting from prototyping with a local gourd pot, we built a smart cold chain box that could help people keep their temperature-sensitive commodities, at regulated temperatures, during storage and transportation”, Iortim added.

Gricd has two unique solutions in its offers: the Gricd Go and Gricd Mote

Gricd Go

Gricd Go is, a service for businesses that want to move cold chain-dependent commodities.

It handles their deliveries, using the Frij boxes and delivers to their customers.It is, simply, a Cold chain logistics marketplace, to deliver temperature-sensitive commodities.

Users can track the temperature of their product en-route to their delivery destinations, while getting a quality assurance reports.

Products that can be delivered, include Medication, Vaccines & Blood, Fruits & Vegetables Fresh Foods, Cold Beverages, Dairy Products, Icecream & Sweets.

Gricd Mote

This is the brand name, for the Frij boxes. It is a product that businesses and laboratories buy, to help them store their cold chain dependent commodities.

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Gricd’s G5-Sleeve

It has IoT-enabled active cooling Gricd boxes, to store temperature-sensitive commodities, at regulated temperatures, during storage and transportation.

Journey so far
  • Gricd has helped deliver, over 200 plasma samples, with notable health institutions
  • Gricd has worked with health institutions, to help deliver more than 800 blood samples
  • Moved more than 200 vaccine vials, to last-mile locations.
Why Gricd in Logistics, Agriculture and Health
Logistics

To meet the last-mile need, for refrigerated transport services, logistics companies would need to invest in special vehicles and infrastructures, racking up high procurement and maintenance.

Gricd’s 50 litres box called G50

Logistics companies can provide their customers, with refrigerated transport services by latching Gricd boxes, onto their standard vehicles, without the need to invest in special vehicles.

Healthcare

According to the World Health Organization, 19.4 million infants, globally, do not have access to life-saving vaccines, largely, due to a lack of inadequate cold chain equipment.

Gricd boxes can be controlled and monitored, in real-time, allowing health organisations, to take proactive decisions that reduce medication wastage.

Why Use Gricd cold boxes in logistics and healthcare?
  • Challenges in the logistics industry include: insignificant market share, high procurement cost, and expensive maintenance
  • Challenges in the healthcare industry in terms of logistics include: potential harm, wasted medication and injured reputation
Using Gricd cold boxes in both industries, users get:
  • access to new markets and market share. There is a large cold chain market that needs to be reached. Users can breach that gap, with our cold boxes.
  • ability to move premium commodity. Gricd offers an IoT-enabled, an efficient and trackable system of conveying items that depends on cooling
Agriculture

In Nigeria, research reveals that, the lack of access to cold chain systems and reliable power supply required, to power them, results in 40% of post-harvest losses.

Gricd’s 15 litres box called G15

Challenges in this industry, in terms of logistics include: food wastage, poor market reach and reduced earnings.

Why Use Gricd Cold Boxes in Agriculture?

Gricd cold boxes will, significantly, help reduce post-harvest product loss, as they are designed with active cooling technology that maintains product preset storage temperatures.

With a reliable cooling system, a wider market and reach, can be explored and serviced.

A decrease in food losses, with an increase in market reach would, significantly, increase business revenue.

Gricd works in partnership with the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research, (NIMR), University Teaching Hospital Ilorin, Zoetis A.L.P.H.A, Aramex.


Featured Image: Oghenetega Iortim, Co-Founder/CEO, Gricd 


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