Few know them but almost 40 percent of homes in Peru do not have a refrigerator. Thinking of that need, the young man Jorge Luis Siesquén Dezaa 28-year-old Peruvian inventor and businessman, came up with the idea of developing the Pukhia refrigerator that does not require electricity.
Pukhi is a low-cost refrigerator with which Siesquén hopes to help the most vulnerable in his country to preserve their food and save money.
According to the report published on the website of Entrepreneur, this young attempter was selected as one of the 35 winners of Innovators under 35 Latin America 2022 from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Technology Review in Spanish.
Siesquén told Peru Reports that Pukhi was born in 2020 as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic: “Eating fresh food in our daily lives is probably something we take for granted, but for a large number of Peruvian families that do not have a refrigerator at home, it is a privilege.”.
To get an idea of how the pandemic affected Peru, an Ipsos study revealed that it was the third country that managed it the worst, behind Brazil and Venezuela. For Jorge Luis Siesquén, the main problem was due to the fact that “people did not have a refrigerator at home and had to buy products every day.”
“The problem has existed for a long time, but the pandemic made it visible”, he added.
How does Pukhi work?
Pukhi uses a “ancestral, accessible and sustainable technology called evaporative cooling with only three simple materials: sand, water and clay”.
Basically, two containers of water are placed, one smaller than the other, and the sand evaporates the water. The creator detailed: “First, what we do is place the sand in the larger container and then sand is placed around the smaller container. The water is placed in this last container and waited for it to evaporate.”.
“Pukhi can store up to six kilograms of food, especially fruits and vegetables, and keep it between five and eleven degrees below ambient temperature for at least two weeks.”, highlighted Siesquén.
In Peru, according to the National Institute of Statistics and Informatics (INEI), in the first three months of 2022 only 58.2% of households in the country had a refrigerator, so a large part of the country could benefit from this invention.
Siesquén assured that 20 Peruvian families already have the device and refrigerators have been installed in popular kitchens “Where the impact is greater because around 100 people are fed.”
Pukhi is also a source of employment: more than 60 people have been trained to build and implement the refrigerators in their homes: “We give work to artisans and spread ecological technology with low environmental impact”.
Jorge Luis Siesquén Deza highlighted that this revolutionary refrigerator can be purchased at his official Web site for about 65 dollars, a third of the price of a low-end refrigerator in Peru. He asked companies in his country to donate some of these models to families in need through social responsibility initiatives.