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Scientific African ; 19(38), 2023.
Article in English | CAB Abstracts | ID: covidwho-2291527


Cold storage is expensive for smallholder farmers and seed processors in developing countries. Smallholder farmers continue to resort to traditional storage methods such as polypropylene (PP) bags for maize grain storage. They often dose the grains with chemicals to preserve them. However, hermetic bags have proven to provide superior protection to grains during storage without chemical treatment. With the advent of the COVID-19 virus which distorted many food systems across continents, stakeholders in the grain industry need to adopt better systems to reduce post-harvest food loss and improve food security. In this study, maize grain quality, nutritional content and viability were compared under three storage methods (PP bags with Phostoxin treatment, cold storage, and hermetic bag) over a storage period of four months. The results showed that the hermetic bag maintained the moisture content (MC) of the stored grains with 0.40% variations from the initial MC of 13% at the end of the storage period compared to 0.70% and 1.10% for grains stored under cold storage and in PP bags, respectively. Grain damage after the 4th month of storage in the hermetic bag had only increased by 0.40% from an initial 13.3% before storage compared to an increase of 6% for cold storage, which was attributed to unstable power during the storage period, and 4.30% for grains stored in the PP bag. Carbon dioxide concentration in the hermetic bag was maintained at about 11% throughout the storage period indicating low microbial activity. The hermetic bag technology was identified as the best option for quality preservation during storage of maize grain over the other methods, and its adoption by smallholder farmers in Ghana should be considered.

Journal of Agribusiness in Developing and Emerging Economies ; 12(3):477-490, 2022.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-1922535


Purpose>This study deals with attenuating the risk of relying on a single export market, which was heightened by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. It focuses on Taiwanese atemoya (a fruit with short storage life) and the adoption of active controlled atmosphere (CA) containers, a new technology which lengthens storage time for other export markets. This study looks at the financial feasibility of the technology's first ever use in atemoya exports.Design/methodology/approach>Apart from the standard financial assessment tools—like net present value (NPV), internal rate of return (IRR), benefit-cost ratio (BCR) and payback period (PBP)—this study calibrated five different scenarios based on data gathered from relevant market agents including suppliers, exporters, customs brokers and technology developer.Findings>Due to the high profit margin and low investment cost, the use of active CA containers for long-haul exports of this highly perishable fruit is found both technically and financially feasible, despite the generally higher operational cost during the pandemic.Research limitations/implications>This study looked at three specific export markets: Malaysia, Dubai and Canada. Results here may lack generalizability in other markets, although it is believed that slight deviations would not invalidate the conclusions of this research because short, medium and long distances were all covered therein.Originality/value>This paper studies the first time that active CA is used for export of atemoyas to expand existing markets.

Scientific Bulletin. Series F. Biotechnologies ; 25(2):47-53, 2021.
Article in English | CAB Abstracts | ID: covidwho-1870961


Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated lockdowns, many events occurred, such as supply chain disruption, shielding and working from home restrictions along with diminished incomes and people's extra time spent in their own homes;all these have led to broad changes in consumer attitudes and behaviour. Therefore, people spent more time at home in all countries, and there was a significant increase in the number of people who enjoyed experiencing cooking at home, having a regular schedule for their meals. Pasta represents one of the most consumed food products in the world, their consumption increasing from year to year, experiencing a boost demand during the pandemic, because it has many important advantages such as: low cost, easy to cook, high nutritional value and long shelf life. Properly cooked pasta has a low potential to increase blood sugar, it slows down digestion and give a feeling of satiety for a longer period. The purpose of this study was to obtain information on consumer perceptions towards pasta consumption in order to develop new products that are adapted to current consumer requirements and preferences.