Fruits and vegetable retail vending is mostly done by the push carts or permanent shops and nowadays in super markets. The push cart are heaped with fruits and vegetables heaped on its top and sold to the customers. The produces are exposed to the hot sun, dust and pollution while moving on the streets/ roads. This process gives way for the post harvest losses to the extent of 10-15 % every day. Post harvest losses can be reduced if the push carts are fitted with the provision to provide temperature and humidity management system in a enclosed chamber which also protects from dust and pollution. Hence, a solar power operated tricycle cart for fresh fruits and vegetables vending. It facilitates to keep the fruits and vegetables under hygienic and evoparatively cooled condition to keep them fresh for atleast for 36 – 48 hours from the time of harvest.
The overall dimension of the fruits and vegetable chamber is 1.5 x 1 x 1 m which is made up of aluminium frames and fittings. It is covered with glass doors to protect from dust and pollution, entry of insects. It is provided with the fine misting system to maintain humidity inside the chamber which will keep the produce fresh. There are 8 plastic crates which can hold 10-15 kg of produce and two ICAR-IIHR designed high humidity box to keep the leafy vegetables. It can hold approximately 80-120 kg of fruits and vegetables.A 30 W DC misting diaphragm pump with 10 nozzles of 0.1 mm size to produce more than 100 bar pressure to get very fine misting inside the chamber. The entire chamber is mounted on a tricycle frame. The tricycle is powered by a 48V , 750 W DC geared motor. A voltage controller and Lithium Ion battery of 24 Ah is used to store solar power to source DC power