International Studies & Programs

Enhancing Food Security through Gravity Goods Ropeways in Nepal

The project team for this GCFSI student innovation grant is working to improve food security, nutrition, and the financial security of farmers living in the mountainous regions of Nepal through an innovation known as the Gravity Goods Ropeway, which helps transport goods over hilly communities. 


Project Team: Diwakar Kc, Chubamenla Jamir, Ritendra Thapa Magar

A team of researchers from TERI University in New Delhi, India, is working to improve food security, nutrition, and the financial security of farmers living in the mountainous regions of Nepal through an innovation known as the Gravity Goods Ropeway (GGR). The GGR—a simple means of transporting goods in the hilly communities of Nepal—operates solely by gravitational force without the use of external power. In Nepal, GGR is credited for connecting farmers directly to the market while maintaining low operational costs and prices. GGR has also been credited with improving revenue for the farmers and aiding in food security.

Prior to the creation of the GGR in Nepal, data showed that the region’s mountainous topography trapped more than 50 percent of the population, leaving them without access to the market and other basic services. The other 50 percent would be forced to carry their products to the market, which often led to the spoiling of degrading of those products. Even though the farmers are growing goods with market value, they are losing bargaining power because of the deteriorated quality from travel.

However, the research team found that even with all of the credit given to GGR, there is not enough evidence to convince governments from other mountainous countries to adopt the technology. To help spread affordable transportation to more people, the team will spend eight months in Nepal conducting household surveys, evaluating data, and reporting research results to decision-makers and stakeholders.