Post-harvest losses occur in hugely concerning percentages in six East African countries where food security is under threat. To address this, an intergovernmental organisation has developed an action plan to help farmers reverse post-harvest loss.
The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that an annual third of the world’s total agricultural industries deals with post-harvest loss.
In the East African Community (EAC), post-harvest loss accounts for 50% in tubers and root vegetables, nearly 70% in fruits and vegetables and 30% in cereals.
The EAC operates as an economic trading bloc and consists of six member states. These include Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Uganda and South Sudan.
According to EAC deputy secretary-general for the productive and social sector, Christophe Bazivamo, they have adopted a fruit and vegetables strategy, as well as a management action plan.
This forms part of their efforts to find solutions to reducing post-harvest losses.
“We aim to unlock this potential by, among other things, pursuing best practices in contract farming, productivity, inputs; utilisation of modern and new technologies and capacity building,” Bazivamo says.
Bazivamo believes that employing these strategies has the potential to “reverse” post-harvest loss.
A detailed article published on FoodForAfrika.com explores the negative impacts of post-harvest loss and the four pillars of food security that must be realised.
According to the article not only does it negatively impacts a country’s food security, but it also has a knock-on effect on levels of nutrition. The article furthermore details practical ways in which the EAC plans to reduce these losses.
For the full article, click here.
This article was written by Lucinda Dordley and originally published on FoodForAfrika.com.
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