PICS3 is the 3rd phase of the Purdue Improved Cowpea Storage (PICS) Project, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The project aims to improve market access, cash incomes, and food security among smallholder farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa by reducing post-harvest storage losses. PICS technology is a cost-effective triple-layer hermetic storage bag. This inexpensive technology permits farmers to store their grains without the use of insecticides, provides them the flexibility to sell at a time of their own choosing, and allows them to supply healthy and clean food to their families throughout the year.
PICS3 works with private entrepreneurs, including seven plastic manufacturers, distributors and vendors to produce and sell PICS bags to farmers in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda, Ghana, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Malawi. The project is also partnering with national and international research/extension organizations and NGOs to create demand for the PICS technology across Sub-Saharan Africa. Effort to build markets for hermetic technologies will reach farmers in 14,000 villages in the seven target countries.
Larry Murdock and the team at Purdue University are working to fight hunger in Africa through their creation of Purdue Improved Crop Storage bags, or PICS for short. These bags allow farmers an affordable means of protecting grains against devastating insect damage, and are paving the way for economic development across the continent.