UK’s University of Birmingham has appointed one of the well known India’s sustainable cold chain experts Pawanexh Kohli as an honorary professor of ‘post-harvest logistics’.
As CEO of India’s National Centre for Cold-chain Development (NCCD), professor Kohli has played a key role in shaping policy and projects aimed at solving post-harvest food loss, particularly in developing refrigeration networks linking the farmers to market, the university said in a release.
The Birmingham Energy Institute has made the high-profile appointment in recognition of professor Kohli’s leadership in sustainable food logistics in meeting key development targets and his role in helping define the applied research programmes between Birmingham and India to deliver the radical innovation needed.
Professor Kohli has a long relationship with the University. In 2015, the Birmingham Policy Commission on Cold Chain, chaired by Lord Teverson, recognised Kohli’s contributions as an expert witness.
Professor Martin Freer, director at the Birmingham Energy Institute, said, “Prime minister Narendra Modi has set India the challenge of doubling farmers’ income by 2022. The cold chain is a key part of a solution to boost India’s food security and reduce environmental impact.
“Pawanexh Kohli has worked closely with government and industry to help define Indian policy in this area; a key figure in this critical field of developing expertise. He has been invaluable in helping the University of Birmingham effectively design its work in this field with Indian partners.”
In 2012, professor Kohli helped to establish the NCCD which works between the Indian government, farmers and industry. He acts as the chief advisor to the department of agriculture and farmers’ welfare on post-harvest management, cold-chain and supply chain.
Professor Pawanexh Kohli said, “I am personally surprised and most honoured, I am sure this will embolden many other cold-chain stakeholders to do so much more. The University of Birmingham has clearly taken the lead in affirming that post-harvest logistics is the backbone to sustaining the agricultural system, worldwide. Effective post-harvest logistics makes agriculture more environmentally and economically relevant.”
The appointment follows a recent event in India, which saw the University welcoming environmentalists and industrialists to explore ways of advancing the use of clean cold technology to meet in a sustainable way the rising demand for cooling.