Jefferson Kang'acha KENYA, 19
Project: The Eden Horticultural Hub
Basic Human Needs: Food
In Jefferson’s home country of Kenya, food security has been an ongoing issue. The supply of tomatoes, a staple ingredient in Kenyan households, is steadily declining. As a result, the price of tomatoes has spiked to alarmingly high prices that most Kenyan families cannot afford. Jefferson learned that the low production of tomatoes was attributed to harsh weather conditions, prevalence of tomato pests and the spread of disease. He explored hydroponic production as a solution and created The Eden Horticultural Hub. The agricultural business produces hydroponic tomatoes in a controlled climate and soilless environment, with production taking place both in and out of season. In its first few months, The Eden Horticultural Hub grew and distributed 2.5 tons of tomatoes to more than 100 households, as well as local schools and hospitals. This past September they acquired one acre of land, allowing them to generate an additional 12 tons of tomatoes for their community. In 2015, Jefferson was selected to represent Kenya in the International Science Fair in South Africa. In 2016, he was selected as a Global Minimum finalist, and went on to showcase his project at Innovate Kenya, a technology and entrepreneurship camp. Jefferson looks forward to establishing a hydroponic capsicum unit and providing tomatoes to the entire continent of Africa, and the world at large..