Back in 2014, a Nigerian software engineer visited a local supermarket and realised that vendors and retailers were throwing away cans of food that were close to their expiry date. He even asked a shopkeeper the reason for throwing cans that were still a week away from their expiry date. This inspired, Oscar Ekponimo, the engineer to start his website that connects wholesalers with retailers, which has discounts on food all year round. The food that is closer to its expiry date has the highest discount of up to 75 percent.
Now, while you might love playing online games with https://www.betway.com.ng/ , we are sure you would want to contribute your own part when it comes to reducing the Nigerian food wastage. Wondering how do you do it? It’s exactly what Ekponimo was looking for as well.
These foods are mostly bought by organizations including restaurants, hotels, and non-profit organizations. When they check the product on the website, they receive a code, which they show when they visit the store and get food at a discount. The website and app are called Chowberry and is a one great approach to global hunger.
Even though billions of people around the world are starving everyday, 33 percent of food is destroyed after harvest, in stores before it reaches expiry, or while transportation. According to World Food Program, 182 million people in Nigeria live below the poverty line, a total of 60 percent, which is the highest in Africa. They earn less than $1 a day.
When Ekponimo was 11-years old, his father who worked as a construction worker suffered from a partial stroke that left one side of his body paralysed. He was unable to work, which forced his mother, a nurse by profession, to fend for herself and her four children. She had no choice but work and take care of her husband and growing children, all at the same time. Ekponimo revealed that they were only able to eat one wholesome, low protein meal, once in two days and depended heavily on relatives for food.
His vow to help those in need.
Ekponimo started conducting food drives while studying computer science at University of Calabar. He won the 2013 International Telecommunications Union award for young innovator and received a grant of $5,000, which he used to developed Chowberry that was released later in the year. Ekponimo said that his startup’s goal is simple – to prevent food, which was going to be wasted from getting wasted. When he explained the concept of Chowberry to a shopkeeper in the local market, he wasn’t quite welcoming.
That didn’t stop him and he kept approaching several shopkeepers and found success in Raphael Emakpor, a pharmacy and general store owner from Abuja. He wanted to collaborate with him instantly. Today, Chowberry is working with nine shops in Abuja and 20 stores in Lagos to defeat starvation and poverty. Ekponimo was named as one of Time magazine’s Next Generation Leaders in 2017.