Solar Dryers For Agricultural Products

Share

Grekkon Limited is the largest supplier of  low cost solar dryers for agricultural products in Kenya .  These are low cost solar dryers that work on solar strength, and are also augmented with a biomass heat unit if so desired by the client. Our agricultural solar dryers design is according to the product, location, and drying volume per session. These passive or active solar dryers for fruits and vegetables are fixed or portable as the user needs it. The fixed ones are large and impractical to move about, while the portable one are small domestic drying units

 

Solar dried mango slices

Types of Food Solar Dryers in Kenya

Grekkon limited designs and constructs both passive/ natural circulation, and active/ forced circulation solar dryers for agricultural products. The passive solar dryers have no additional mechanical input, while the active dryers do. Additional mechanical inputs are;  a biomass heating unit, or solar powered exhaust and extraction fans, and synchronizers. These enhance drying time by 30% to 100% compared to passive drying. Attached biomass heating units allow for night time drying, or on cloudy/ rainy days.

 

Types of solar dryers in Kenya by Grekkon Limited

Solar Dryer Materials

  • Light UV treated translucent polythene paper to allow heat and light. The paper also has anti-drip treatment to prevent dew formation which causes moulds to form on food
  • Heavy UV treated geomembrane to conserve heat
  • Steel bars galvanized with food-grade aluminum or zinc for food safety
  • UV treated heavy gauge netting to prevent insect pests from entering

 

A simple portable solar dryer under construction by the Grekkon technical team at Rusinga Island, Homa Bay county. The local community will dry bananas for processing into flour

 

Below are 2 videos: The first one is of a farmer in Homa-bay county, western Kenya using a community passive/ natural circulation solar dryer to add value to banana produce. The second one is of a mango processor in Taita Taveta county at the county’s coast with an active/ forced circulation dryer. Both solar dryers are by Grekkon Limited.

Video 1.

 

 

 

Video 2.

 

Our solar dryers for fruits and vegetables have shelves at different levels depending on the volume or weight of food crops to dry per session.

Solar Dryer Design

What is the working principle of a solar dryer?

1. Passive/ Natural Circulation Food Solar Dryer

Grekkon Limited solar dryers work in the following steps;

i. Capture & collect the sun’s heat

ii. Create a ‘greenhouse effect’ which causes moisture loss from the produce

iii. Air coming into the dryer exits with this moisture from the vent

Conventional solar dryer in Kenya by Grekkon Limited

2 Active/ Forced Circulation Food Solar Dryer

In addition to what takes place in the passive solar drying unit, the fans force in hot air from outside, and force out hotter air combined with moisture from inside the dryer. At night or on cloudy/ rainy days, the biomass unit supplies the drying heat.

Conventional solar dryers

Pros and cons of a food solar dryer in Kenya

  1. Speed of drying. Food dries four to five times faster.
  2. Quality. As the sun’s UV rays do not get into direct contact with the drying food, the food’s; color, taste, scent, and nutritional value is unaffected
  3. Cleanliness. The food is free from dust, sand, or other external contaminants
  4. No pests. Insect, bird, or mammalian pests have no access to food in the dryer, so no attack occurs
  5. It is more expensive to build and maintain than open-air drying

 

Solar dried chilli peppers

 

 Solar Dryers For Agricultural Products

FAQs

I. What are solar dryer prices in Kenya by Grekkon Limited?

We price according to size & type. The table below illustrates some sample design pricing for passive solar dryers

 

Solar Dryer Size Drying Capacity Price of Solar Dryer
1.5m x 1.5m x 1.5m 40-50kgs KES 70,000
2m x 2m x 2m 50-90kgs KES 75,000
2m x 3m x 2m 80-100kgs KES 95,000
2m x 4m x 2m 90-110kgs KES 100,000
2m x 5m x 2m 100-130kgs KES 120,000
L X W x H

 

II. How does a vegetable dryer work?

  1. Heat

    They allow in diffused heat from the top and the sides, which heats up the air coming in from the air inlet. This hot air will exit with moisture in the air outlet.

  2. Anti-drip management

    Our UV treated polythene cover has anti-drip properties so water droplets do not form on it. It prevents dripping on the drying food which is a precursor for fungal development.

III. What does a solar dryer do?

Grekkon Limited’s solar dryers reduce the moisture content to less than 12% in these products;

  • Plantation crops; coffee, rice, cassava
  • Vegetables; tomato, onion, garlic, brassicas, hot peppers
  • Cereals; sorghum, and millet
  • Herbs; moringa, mint, rosemary
  • Oil crops; groundnuts, sunflower, macadamia, cashew nuts
  • Others; mushrooms, fish, beef, mutton

IV. How do you dry vegetables with solar?

  • Wash the vegetables to remove all dirt
  • Ensure there are no insect pests present
  • Remove any diseased parts or produce
  • Cut or grind them into smaller pieces to increase the drying surface area

Place them in the solar dryer holding trays

 

Solar dryers for agricultural products

Dry cassava chips

 

V. What is the most popular use of solar dryers?

To dry fruits, mushrooms, vegetables, herbs, spices, coffee, cassava, banana and fish. Banana and cassava are further processed into food flour

VI. What are the main applications of a solar dryer?

Besides vegetables and fruits, commercial solar dryers in Kenya are for fish, root crops and mushroom drying. Commonly dried foods in Kenya through our solar dryers are:

i. Banana, cassava, pumpkin, millet, and sorghum to make food flour. Dried cassava is also processed for industrial starch manufacture

ii. Moringa as a medicinal herb

iii. Tomato, capsicum, traditional vegetables, kales, and spinach  as vegetable nutrients

iv.  Mango, papaya, as dried fruits for snacking

v.  Omena which is the silver cyprinid fish for both human consumption, and as additive to animal feed

vi. Coffee so that it’s suitable for milling. Coffee solar dryers are the largest, each holding over 5 tons of berries per drying session

Share this post
Established in 2017, Grekkon Limited is a Kenyan agribusiness company. It specialises in the provision of; - Irrigation systems - Greenhouse construction - Dam liners installation - Water pumps - Solar dryers construction - Agriculture nets - Borehole drilling The company has operations offices in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nyeri, Meru, and Nyahururu

Comments (39)

  • Pingback:Solar Dryers in Kenya | Fruits and Vegetables Dryers | +254 711 895 635 |

  • hi

    How long can it take to dry 300kg of fresh chili to less than 10% moisture content?

    Does it still work on cold cloudy and rainy weather (with no sun at all)?

    Boni
    Reply
  • Hi,

    How many hours are needed to dry 300kg of fresh chilies to less than 10% moisture content?

    Does it work on cloudy and rainy days when there is completely no sun?

    KR
    Boni

    Boni
    Reply
  • Dear Sir
    Iwant informations about solar dryer for onions,howe it takes to be fried?

    Ally Munyanziza
    Reply
    • Dear Ally

      Onion will take 2 hours to dry to 10% moisture level

      Best regards,

      Customer Service

      Reply
  • Thank you for your quick response. I am based in Nakuru town. Interested in cassava, pimpin, sweet potatoes and yams

    George
    Reply
  • Hello, are your driers portable structures or permanent ones? Can I use one drier for drying different products such as cassava, tomato chillie etc?
    What are the TAT times for a complete drying process?

    Regards,
    George

    George
    Reply
    • Dear George,

      We design both prtable and fixed solar dryers according to your need. And yes, this solar dryer dries everything. The TAT is by product and the prevailing weather. For instance, cassava will take 2-2.5 hours to dry when the skies are clear. Moringa leaves will take less than half the time to dry.

      What do you intend to dry, where?

      Best regards,

      Customer Service

      Reply
      • I’d like to venture into fruits Drying mostly Mangoes, Jackfruit and Pineapples. What’s the conversion rate of wet to dry? How long does it take for each of these to dry? What’s the cost of a 200kgs, 500kgs and 750kgs drier? Is it viable in Kericho region?

        Japheth Ngeno
        Reply
  • HI I would like a dryer that can dry chilies and Garlic thanks

    FREDRICK JUMA
    Reply
    • Dear Juma,

      Thank you for your inquiry. We do have design and construct solar dryers for chilli and garlic. To give you a cost estimate, share with us the wet weight you’ll dry per session.

      Best regards,

      Customer servie

      Reply
  • Kindly need a quote for a solar dryer 2tons capacity

    Japheth kabesa
    Reply
    • Dear Japheth,

      Good afternoon and thank you for your inquiry. A wet weight of 2-ton per session fruit solar dryer is Kes 1,500,000. This is all material and installation labor. When and where do you need it installed?

      Best regards,

      Customer Service

      Reply
  • Interested in learning more about the dryers. Banana and tea farmer

    Mary Ngati
    Reply
    • Good evening Mary,

      Our solar dryers are customized to your need. All you need to give us is; the crop to dry, and target drying volume per session. From this, we generate a quote for you. Reach us on 0777 157 132 or inbox your number for us to call you back.

      Best regards,

      Customer Service

      Reply
  • We are a group of mushroom farmers and would like to find out whether your solar driers can be used to dry mushrooms…….🤔🤔

    Reply
    • Dear Anthony,

      Thank you for your inquiry. Yes our solar dryers will dry mushrooms. How many kilos do you want to dry per session?

      Best regards,

      Customer Service

      Reply
      • Dear Grekkkn team,

        Good evening? Iam director Wella uganda , we are focused in cassava value addition, iam making an inquiry for 2 ton capacity solar dryer for cassava drying to be installed at our processing site here in Gayaza- wakiso District ,Uganda
        Ican be reached on tel no.+256779042766
        Director
        Wella Uganda limited

        Reply
        • Good evening George,

          Thank you for reaching out tobsecure your solar dryer in Kenya. Our director in charge of Uhanda will be in touch

          Best regards,
          Customer Service

          Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Start typing and press Enter to search

Shopping Cart

No products in the basket.

Call Now Button