Post harvest management of horticultural crops

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Adapted from: Silva, E. Respiration and ethylene and their relationship to postharvest handling In Wholesale success: a farmer's guide to selling, postharvest handling, and packing produce Midwest edition. Fresh produce is at peak quality when picked; its quality can only be maintained or deteriorated as it is handled and stored. Maintaining crop quality after harvest is an important consideration for any fresh market produce grower or handler.

  • Postharvest management of horticultural crops for doubling farmer’s income
  • Postharvest
  • Robot or human?
  • Small-Scale Postharvest Handling Practices: A Manual for Horticultural Crops (4th Edition)
  • Role of Postharvest Management for Food Security: A Review
  • Postharvest management of horticultural crops
  • Workshop on advanced postharvest technologies for horticultural crops
  • Three Week Certificate course on Post-Harvest Management of Horticultural Crops
WATCH RELATED VIDEO: Post harvest management of fruits and vegetables and freezing of peas

Postharvest management of horticultural crops for doubling farmer’s income

The aim of this review was how to manage postharvest losses of crops for food security. Postharvest losses of crops commodities were managed or controlled by doing proper harvesting, transportation, packing, storage, processing, sorting and cleaning. Thus, reduction of post-harvest food losses is a critical component of ensuring future global food security.Post-harvest loss is an important threat to food security, loss in farmer incomes, and inefficiency in the global food system.

It is estimated that a third of food produced worldwide is lost and or wasted. Important elements of the post-harvest loss challenge include: multiple points of intervention, multiple value chains, multiple technologies a dimensionality problem in terms of the technology , and value chains embedded in weak and poorly developed agricultural systems.

Postharvest loss can be defined as the degradation in both quantity and quality of a food production from harvest to consumption. These losses are generally more common in developed countries. Quantity losses refer to those that result in the loss of the amount of a product. Loss of quantity is more common in developing countries. A recent FAO report indicates that at global level, volumes of lost and wasted food in high income regions are higher in downstream phases of the food chain, but just the opposite in low-income regions where more food is lost and wasted in upstream phases.

Food security affects almost everyone on the globe; Sub-Saharan Africa has the widespread chronic food insecurity.

As of May , for example, out of thirty nine countries in the world which were experiencing serious food emergencies and required external assistance for dealing with critical food insecurity: twenty five were in Africa, eleven in Asia and Near East, two in Latin America and one in Europe. Established that these food crises are fuelled by mainly armed conflict, often compounded by drought, floods and the effects of the AIDS pandemic.

These have vast impact on food production and food security as millions of people who are driven from their homes are unable to work their fields; they are also cut off from markets for their produce and from commercial supplies of seed, fertilizer and credit.

Cereals like maize are one of the major staple food crops in Sub- Saharan Africa.However, the climate and conditions of this area attract a huge number of factors that contribute to the destruction of the crops especially at the post-harvest level. Whenever crops are grown, insect pests and phytopathogenic microorganisms are attracted; hence the strategies which a county or individual farmers employ in post-harvest management will determine the farm utilization priority, grain quality in the market, food diversification, food security and general living standards of the people involved.

However, due to poor post-harvest management strategies in the sub-Saharan region, there has been a repeated cycle of food production and post-harvest losses which have systematically depleted the mineral quality of the farms leaving substantial food insecurity in the region.

Although Africa is endowed with the highest level of plant diversities in the world, many of these have not been domesticated because the available land for such trials is always occupied by the same type of stable crops. Much of product losses are due to poor storage facilities: for example, the use of traditional wooden cribs which harbor pests like the lesser and larger grain borers; indiscriminate use of pesticides which has increased pesticide resistance of insects; high humidity and moisture content of grains during storage; climate change which has caused the time of harvest and drying to be largely unpredictable.

However, proper post-harvest management strategies can enable farmers to store high quality grain which can fetch high prices in the global market. Moreover, the storage can enable a farmer to subsequently grow a different type of crop which can make a farmer to practice crop rotation.

Postharvest technologies can contribute to food security in multiple ways. They can reduce PHL, thereby increasing the amount of food available for consumption by farmers and poor rural and urban consumers.For example, the control of the Larger Grain Borer LGB greatly reduced the loss of maize in on-farm storage among smallholders in a number of African countries, thus improving their food security. The benefits to consumers from reducing losses include lower prices and improved food security.

Techniques to reduce food losses require cultural and economic adaption. This is so because all food losses occur at a particular socio-cultural environment. Current world population is expected to reachFood availability and accessibility can be increased by increasing production, improving distribution, and reducing the losses. Food and Agriculture Organization of U. Reduction in these losses would increase the amount of food available for human consumption and enhance global food security, a growing concern with rising food prices due to growing consumer demand, increasing demand for biofuel and other industrial uses, and increased weather variability.

A reduction in food also improves food security by increasing the real income for all the consumers World Bank,In addition, crop production contributes significant proportion of typical incomes in certain regions of the world 70 percent in Sub- Saharan Africa and reducing food loss can directly increase the real incomes of the producers World Bank,Over the past decades, significant focus and resources have been allocated to increase food production.

Increasing agricultural productivity is critical for ensuring global food security, but this may not be sufficient. Food production is currently being challenged by limited land, water and increased weather variability due to climate change. To sustainably achieve the goals of food security, food availability needs to be also increased through reductions in the post-harvest process at farm, retail and consumer levels.

Food losses do not merely reduce food available for human consumption but also cause negative externalities to society through costs of waste management, greenhouse gas production, and loss of scarce resources used in their production.

Food loss is estimated to be equivalent to percent of human-generated greenhouse gas emissions. A significant contributor of this problem is through methane gas generation in landfills where food waste decomposes anaerobically. Considering the criticality of post-harvest loss reduction in enhancing the food security, it becomes very important to know the pattern and scale of these losses across the world, especially in developing countries, and identify its causes and possible solutions.

Although losses occur at each stage of the supply chain from production to consumer level, storage losses are considered most critical in developing countries. Technology interventions play a critical role in addressing the issue of PHL, and several efforts have been made to develop and disseminate these technologies for smallholders in developing.

Linkage between food wastage interventions and food security often not explicit: In spite of the popularity of food wastage interventions in policy circles, the number of studies and documents on the relationship between food wastage actions and food security is relatively small. Although the claim that food wastage interventions contribute to food security is quite pervasive in both the academic and grey literature, the relationship between both variables is rather implicit.

There are few documents or studies on a possible causal relationship between reducing, reusing, or recycling food wastage on the one hand and food security, including environmental conditions and necessary natural resources for food security, on the other.

Those that do, often lack a sound empirical foundation or an evaluation after the intervention has finished, a so-called ex post evaluation.This void is reinforced by a lack of available data concerning the number of actions in general, and their effects in particular, which makes it difficult to measure any form of progress.

Short-term impacts of food wastage interventions: It is generally agreed in the literature, that some food wastage interventions can have a direct impact on short-term food security conditions. This is particularly true for pre- and post-harvest loss reduction actions in developing countries, particularly interventions at a local level in smallholder agriculture. Pre- and post-harvest loss reduction can help smallholders to adapt to climate variability.

Middle-and long-term impacts of food wastage interventions: In this section, two categories of more indirect impacts of food wastage interventions on middle-and long-term food security are synthesized. The first group of impacts concerns those that have an effect on food security in a narrow sense, i. The second group is related to impacts on the broader food system factors that interact with these food security dimensions, notably environmental conditions and natural resources.

Decrease pressure on natural resources: A motive is mentioned based on natural resources linked to food production and food security. If food wastage is reduced, less land, water, inputs and energy are needed, and less greenhouse gas emitted. These natural resources could be used to increase food production, or affect the food system in other ways. Linked to this motive, is a specific one based on the future need for food, and increasing global food supply.

On a global level, the World Resources Institute WRI , a global research organization, for example states from a natural resources perspective that reducing food loss and waste is part of creating a sustainable food future.

From a recent study, it concluded that reducing wastage could contribute to future food availability: 'The world will need about 60 percent more calories per year by in order to adequately feed the projected population of more than 9 billion people.

Cutting current rates of food loss and waste in half would reduce the size of this food gap by about 22 percent. Information, knowledge and expertise: Worth mentioning as a separate indirect, long term link between food wastage and food security that a number of actors embrace, is the claim that information, knowledge and expertise can help to deal with food waste and loss.

A typical post-harvest chain comprises of a number of stages for the movement of harvested output from the field to the final retail market. The losses incurred at each step vary depending upon the organization and technologies used in the food supply chain. For example, in less developed countries where the supply chain is less mechanized, larger losses are incurred during drying, storage, processing and in transportation Figures 1 and 2.

The magnitude and pattern of Post- Harvest Losses PHLs therefore vary across countries based on their stage of economic development. In high- and middle-income countries, significant losses occur in the early stages of the food supply chains and at the consumer level United Nations,Figure 1: Traditional versus mechanized postharvest chain Hodges, Buzby, and Bennett,Biological internal causes of deterioration include respiration rate, ethylene production and action, rates of compositional changes associated with color, texture, flavor, and nutritive value , mechanical injuries, water stress, sprouting and rooting, physiological disorders, and pathological breakdown.

The rate of biological deterioration depends on several environmental external factors, including temperature, relative humidity, air velocity, and atmospheric composition concentrations of oxygen, carbon dioxide, and ethylene , and sanitation procedures. All these factors have been discussed by numerous authors. Although the biological and environmental factors that contribute to postharvest losses are well understood and many technologies have been developed to reduce these losses, they have not been implemented due to one or more of the following socioeconomic factors.

Inadequate marketing systems: Growers can produce large quantities of good-quality fruits, ornamentals, and vegetables, but, if they do not have a dependable, fast, and equitable means of getting such commodities to the consumer, losses will be extensive. This problem exists in many locations within developing countries. It is accentuated by lack of communication between producers and receivers, and lack of market information.

Marketing cooperatives should be encouraged among producers of major commodities in important production areas. Such organizations are especially needed in developing countries because of the relatively small farm size. Advantages of marketing cooperatives include: providing central accumulation points for the harvested commodity, purchasing harvesting and packing supplies and materials in quantity, providing for proper preparation for market and storage when needed, facilitating transportation to the markets, and acting as a common selling unit for the members, coordinating the marketing program, and distributing profits equitable.

Production should be maintained as close to the major population centers as possible to minimize transportation costs. In several countries, there are plans to build better whole sale marketing facilities, but their implementation has been delayed more because of social and political than financial considerations.Inadequate transportation facilities: In most developing countries, roads are not adequate for proper transport of horticultural crops. Also, transport vehicles and other modes, especially those suited for fresh horticultural perishables, are in short supply.

This is true whether for local marketing or export to other countries. The majority of producers have small holdings and cannot afford to own their own transport vehicles. In a few cases, marketing organizations and cooperatives have been able to acquire transport vehicles, but they cannot do much about poor road conditions.

Government regulations and legislations: The degree of governmental controls, especially on wholesale and retail prices of fresh fruits and vegetables, varies from one country to another. In many cases, price controls are counter-productive. Although intended for consumer protection, such regulations encourage fraud and provide no incentive for producing high-quality produce or for postharvest quality maintenance.

On the other hand, regulations covering proper handling procedures and public health aspects food safety issues during marketing are, if enforced properly, very important to the consumer. This is true of harvesting aids; containers; equipment for cleaning, waxing, and packing; and cooling facilities. Most of the tools are neither manufactured locally nor imported in sufficient quantity to meet demand. Various governmental regulations in some countries do not permit direct importation by producers of their needs.

It is imperative that the tools that will enable handlers to use recommended technology for a given situation be available for them to use. In many cases, such tools can be manufactured locally at much lower cost than those imported. Lack of information: The human element in postharvest handling of horticultural commodities is extremely important.Most handlers involved directly in harvesting, packaging, transporting, and marketing in developing countries have limited or no appreciation for the need for, or how, to maintain quality.

An effective and far-reaching educational extension program on these aspects is needed critically now and will continue to be essential in the future.


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This course evaluates the principles of post-harvest storage, cooling, transportation, modified and controlled atmospheres, and handling of horticultural.

Robot or human?

Box , Ethiopia, E-mail: destabek. Citation: Desta Bekele. J Plant Sci Res. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The aim of this review was to know the factors that affect post harvest quality of fruits. The pre-harvest factors influencing postharvest quality were cultural practices, mineral nutrition, genetic factors and climatic factors. Post harvest factors influencing postharvest quality of fruits were maturity stage, method of harvesting, time of harvesting, precooking, sorting and grading, packaging and packaging materials, storage, type of storage, temperature and relative humidity during storage and transportation, transportation, road condition. Nutritional loss loss of vitamins, antioxidant, and health-promoting substances or decreased market value is another important loss that occurs in fresh produce. Quality of fresh produce is governed by many factors.

Small-Scale Postharvest Handling Practices: A Manual for Horticultural Crops (4th Edition)

Training farmers on proper postharvest vegetable management at Ngolowingo Cooperative, Salima district, Malawi.To read more posts in the series, click here. Malawi is an agro-based economy country. The country has been relying on tobacco production as its main source for earning currency. However, due to the global anti-smoking campaign lobby, the tobacco market has been facing a lot of challenges, which has negatively affected farmers.

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Role of Postharvest Management for Food Security: A Review

Metrics details. Horticultural crops are sources of vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber, but their cultivation is not widely practiced in developing countries, like Ethiopia due to small-scale farming systems and poor pre- and post-harvest handling techniques. In Ethiopia, particularly in northern region, the production of horticultural crops usually practiced in very few pocket areas, such as at river and lakesides. Thus, the production of fruits and vegetables is just at the beginning stage and getting momentum by governmental and non-governmental organizations. To assess the production potential and post-harvest losses of fruits and vegetables, a survey research was conducted in Tigray Regional State, northern Ethiopia.

Postharvest management of horticultural crops

Postharvest food losses and waste are major concerns affecting food security and safety. Postharvest losses PHLs of horticultural crops are greater in developing countries and regions with warm climates. The major causes are inappropriate postharvest practices and poor infrastructure for transportation, storage, cooling, processing, and marketing. Many small-scale farmers lack access to postharvest cooling equipment; covered, cooled grading, sorting, and packing areas; refrigerated short-term storage; and packing and loading facilities. Twenty-nine participants from 11 countries as well as three resource persons from Malaysia, New Zealand, and the Philippines and two local experts attended.The resource persons presented different perspectives on postharvest losses and wastage in the horticultural sector, innovative cost-effective postharvest technologies for small and medium farms and enterprises, modern logistics management in horticultural supply chains, cold chain and logistics services for small farmers to reduce PHLs, applications of digital technology in postharvest handling, controlled atmosphere storage technology for horticultural products, and policies and institutional settings for promoting the adoption of advanced postharvest technologies.

This course evaluates the principles of post-harvest storage, cooling, transportation, modified and controlled atmospheres, and handling of horticultural.


This course evaluates the principles of post-harvest storage, cooling, transportation, modified and controlled atmospheres, and handling of horticultural crops. Post-harvest biology and technology to maximize quality and shelf life are studied at an applied level. Physiological processes and underlying management practices are examined in depth and with illustrations from contemporary research literature.

Workshop on advanced postharvest technologies for horticultural crops

RELATED VIDEO: Postharvest Physiology of Fruits and Vegetables - Online notes

Horticultural produce plays a significant role in human nutrition by supplying vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre and anti-oxidants to the diet. The quality and safety of horticultural produce reaching the consumer hinges upon pre-harvest factors as well as proper post harvest management practices throughout the chain, from the field to the consumer. Each stakeholder along the post-harvest chain- i. Basic approaches to maintaining the safety and quality of horticultural produce are the same, regardless of the market to which this produce is targeted.This document reviews the factors which contribute to quality and safety deterioration of horticultural produce, and describes approaches to assuring the maintenance of quality and safety throughout the post-harvest chain. Specific examples are given to illustrate the economic implications of investing in and applying proper post-harvest technologies.

He also assured the trainees of all technical help and support in the future if they worked hard. It may be noted that the objective of the course is to skill rural unemployed youth on post harvest management, food processing and value addition of horticulture crops which will enable them to be fully equipped to run and manage pack houses, cold storage and food processing unit.

Three Week Certificate course on Post-Harvest Management of Horticultural Crops

Improving crop quality is a challenge in the context of a global horticultural food supply, since the development of sustainable crop production systems inevitably affects many quality traits. Fruit and vegetable quality includes size, visual attractiveness color, shape , overall flavor taste and texture , health benefits, shelf life, suitability for processing…etc. At each step of the production chain, specific criteria prevail depending on the product's final destination, either the fresh market or the processing industry. These criteria are not necessarily the same throughout the chain, and likely interact during the product's life. Thus, the management and improvement of postharvest quality requires the integration of knowledge from the field until purchase and consumption of the fresh or processed product. This e-collection collates state-of-the-art research outputs on the quality of fruits and vegetables from seed to fork, covering the underlying physiological processes, the genetic and environmental controls during plant and organ development and the postharvest evolution of quality during storage and processing.The molecular and genetic controls behind quality build-up are illustrated on different species.

At the end of the course learners will be able to CO1 Identify different varieties of crops Apply CO2 Select suitable site and season for different varieties of crop Apply CO3 Experiment with growth management practice of different crops Apply CO4 Analyse different water and fertilizer management methods Analyze CO5 Evaluate different post harvest methods in horticulture crops Evaluate. Scope of horticultural. Major pests and diseases and their management in horticulture crops.

Watch the video: Postharvest Deterioration of Horticultural Crops - PPF - Dr Diaa El-Ansary


  1. Goltigrel

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  2. Atherton

    Yeah, get caught!

  3. Watt

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  4. Brataxe

    Earlier I thought differently, thanks for an explanation.

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