Niger is one of the least-developed and poorest nations in the globe, according to the latest report on Human Development Index, UNDP.
Two-thirds of the population lives below the poverty line, surviving on less than 1 dollar per day and hunger is a daily issue for many families. With about 80% of land area enveloped within the Sahara Desert, the country is affected by droughts, desertification and most lately floods. Most of the population consists out of subsistence farmers, living in the rural area. The harsh weather and poverty have resulted in parents not able to sustain their children and their own basic living needs.
Local communities earn their living from selling cracked Desert Date or Aduwa Nuts to Sahara-Sahel Food, majorly cracked by women. Their income depends on quality and quantity of the seed from the cracking process. The present nuts cracking tool is inefficient and unsafe, as it requires lots of effort to yield little quantity and poor-quality seed. It has high tendency of causing injuries in the fingers of the users.
EWB targets to develop a tool suitable for cracking Desert Date or Aduwa Nuts and produce better quality seed at a higher cracking rate. With this tool, the users can improve their income to sustain their children and family, consequently be encouraged to plant more perennial trees.
The solutions will incorporate the following characteristics:
Designing, developing, testing and refining an improved nut cracker for desert date/aduwa nuts. This means a nut cracker that is designed to crack the aduwa nuts so the seeds come out whole.
Nut crackers are designed for special nuts. The reason why nut crackers from the Western world don’t work is that they are designed for specific nuts. Most of the nuts of Niger, including Aduwa are not worldwide known, and nobody has therefore seen the use for making a convenient nut cracker for those type of nuts.