Country: EthiopiaFocus: AgriculturePartner: Dama EnterprisesStatus: Handed to PartnerYear: 2008

The Rainmaker


Partner: Dama Enterprises

Small plot farmers in Ethiopia currently place dried ears of corn underneath a sack and beat it repeatedly with a stick to remove kernels from the cob—a backbreaking, exhausting process which breaks many kernels, thereby rendering them less suitable for selling, planting, and storing. At least 3.8 million farmers in Ethiopia use this method to shell their corn each year because they lack access to any other method. Our team has created an affordable, ergonomic hand-held sheller made from steel pipe that has teeth for removing intact corn kernels through a twisting motion. The Rainmaker will drastically reduce the physical ailments associated with shelling and enable each farmer to save about $200 each year, primarily from garnering a premium for kernels in the market and savings in sheller labor costs.