Extension of Appropriate Postharvest Technology in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Postharvest Training and Services Center
Photo slideshow from the Postharvest Training and Service Center in Tanzania. View photos on Flickr.
Target Countries: Rwanda, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Benin, Gabon
- Diane M. Barrett, University of California, Davis
- Lisa Kitinoja, World Food Logistics Organization
- Rob Shewfelt, University of Georgia
- Victor Afari-Sefa, AVRDC-The World Vegetable Center, Tanzania
Physical losses of horticultural crops postharvest continue to range from 30-80 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa, and problems with food quality, safety and nutritional value are well documented. While past projects have identified appropriate postharvest technologies and recommended a variety of training, capacity building and small-scale infrastructure development, no single project has integrated all of this information and offered a locally based solution.
This pilot project will combine a wide variety of training programs, adaptive research and demonstrations of postharvest services. It will also provide access to needed tools and supplies in order to reduce postharvest losses and improve market access and incomes for small women farmers in Tanzania.
The project site in Tanzania, at the World Vegetable Center's regional office in Arusha, will serve as a model for postharvest development in five additional Sub-Saharan countries, whose representatives will participate via collaboration with African partners. By the close of project, 30 postharvest specialists from the six countries involved in Sub-Saharan Africa will be well-qualified to implement enhanced postharvest handling techniques. They will be charged to teach these techniques to approximately 1,000 women farmers in their home countries. This will result in increased consumption of higher quality produce and better returns on investment to women farmers.
Updates about the Postharvest Training and Services Center (PTSC):
- Evaluation of a model Postharvest Training and Services Center, published in Agriculture 2015, 5, 441-455; doi:10.3390/agriculture5030441
- Success story: Reducing food losses through postharvest training (PDF) one-pager from Horticulture Innovation Lab staff
- Poster from 2014 annual meeting: Opening a regional postharvest training and services center (PDF)
- Flier from 2014 annual meeting: 2014 project update (PDF)
- "Postharvest ‘master trainers’ graduate from Tanzania center" (see p.5) in Horticulture CRSP News, Jan. 2013
- "Promoting best postharvest practices" article in AVRDC - The World Vegetable Center's newsletter, Nov. 2012
Project deliverables, postharvest information and research results:
- Use of insulated covers over product crates to reduce losses in amaranth during shipping delays, published in Agriculture 2015, 4, 1204-1223; doi:10.3390/agriculture5041204
- Swahili translation (PDF) of "Small-Scale Postharvest Handling Practices: A Manual for Horticultural Crops"
- Postharvest Training group on LinkedIn
- Postharvest Training and Services Center brochure (PDF)
- "Developing and Promoting Sustainable Postharvest Technologies for India and Africa" (PDF) research article in UN ESCAP's Centre for Alleviation of Poverty through Sustainable Agriculture (CAPSA) newsletter