The Manni Group Design Award is now in its third year: this contest calls for designers from all over the world to create unique designs using offsite technologies, evaluated and awarded by internationally renowned architectural firms.
Only 3% of the agricultural harvest in Africa is managed through a proper cold chain system, thus wasting more than half of the produce.
The designers will therefore have to give life to the Ghana Innovation Farm, a place where skills can be shared and wealth can be created, a Cold Hub conceived to improve the economic and social conditions of the overall area.
Ghana, the "land of the Warrior King" or "gold coast" is historically one of the richest and trade-based African lands, a nation that boasts magnificent beaches with sandy coastlines and a flourishing countryside with soft shapes. In this land of wonders and terrible socio-economic contradictions, one hour from the airport of the capital Accra, the Ghanaian government has established a 171-hectare technology hub. Within this structure and in alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development program, InspiraFarms has provided a cold chain center equipped with several plants aimed at supporting local farmers in the harvest season and in the period thereafter.
Here, an infrastructure system and a training center will share knowledge and technologies with the local population to meet their needs, developing strategies to make their activities more competitive and new ways to create jobs and opportunities, especially for the population groups exposed to greater risk.
This is the goal of Ghana Innovation Farm, the third edition of the Manni Group Design Award, an ally of InspiraFarms in building a beacon of culture and innovation: a place that can become a reference for the local community, offering resources, knowledge and solutions capable of giving answers to the most fundamental of human rights, access to food.
Each intervention must be inspired by the broadest principles of environmental sustainability through off-site construction, both in terms of energy needs - crucial in the cold chain - and for the impact of the construction site.
The designers are asked to enhance the design of the proposal: Ghana Innovation Farm will have to define an iconic architecture, capable of becoming a symbol of a process of innovation and modernization of the entire country.
The 2021 edition of the Manni Group Design Award will see, thanks to its powerful focus, the participation as judges of architects and designers of international caliber:
There are 12 judges this year, including archistars such as Eduardo Souto de Moura (Eduardo Souto de Moura), Andreas Fries (Herzog & de Meuron), Giancarlo Mazzanti (El Equipo Mazzanti), Raul Pantaleo (TAMassociati), Giuseppe Grant (Horizontal).
The project counts on the partnership of two excellences in the field of cold chain development on the African continent: InspiraFarms, founded in 2012 with the aim of providing small agricultural businesses growing in emerging markets with the tools, technology and experience to significantly reduce food losses and energy costs, and access higher-value markets; and IFRIA, which globally operates in frontier markets to profitably develop impactful cold chain assets in North and West African markets.
The high value of this initiative is evidenced by the patronage of SACE, the Italian Export Credit Agency, which supports sustainable projects in Italy and abroad; the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA), the world's most important association in the cold logistics sector; and the Fondazione Promozione Acciaio, a cultural institution that promotes the progress of steel construction and infrastructure.
Other very important partners have joined the MGDA21 team: BASF, leader in the chemical sector, is the Main Sponsor of the competition and will award a Gold Mention; Renolit, a reference point for the production of synthetic membranes, and ROCKWOOL, the main player in the mineral wool market as Sponsors.