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Title: Economic cost evaluation of selected vegetable post-harvest losses in Babati District Tanzania
Authors: Mtui, Maria Aloyce
Keywords: Cost evaluation -- Vegetable -- Post-harvest losses
Issue Date: Nov-2017
Publisher: Egerton University
Abstract: Vegetables remain an important source of nutrients in many parts of the world as they contain essential micronutrients, vitamins, antioxidants, and other health-related phytochemicals. They complement staple-based diets. Economically, vegetable production and marketing has a potential of high profit, employment, income generation and increasing commercialisation of the rural areas. However, vegetables are highly perishable and as such most actors in the vegetable value chain incur high post-harvest losses. In Tanzania, research on vegetable post-harvest losses is limited, yet post-harvest loss reduction may substantially contribute to higher returns leading to improving quality of lives of farmers and other actors in the supply chain. The study quantified the economic post-harvest losses of African egg-plant, amaranth and tomatoes along the supply chain, determined the principal causal factors contributing to selected vegetable postharvest losses and the factors influencingthe choice of post-harvest handling practices and techniques. A multi-stage sampling design was adopted for the ultimate selection of 200 vegetable farmers, 50 retailers and 50 wholesalers in Babati district. Descriptive statistics was used to determine the economic post-harvest losses of African eggplant, Amaranth and Tomato. The log-linear regression model was used to determine the principal causal factors contributing to vegetables post-harvest losses and multivariate probit model was used to determine factors that influence farmers’ choice of post-harvest handling techniques and practices. Results showed that farm level vegetable post-harvest losses were higher compared to retail and wholesale market levels. This study found that economic postharvest losses incurred per individual per season for Egg-plant were TZS 408,800, TZS 111,650 and TZS 255,000; Amaranth TZS 181,500, TZS 23,650 and TZS 16,800 and Tomatoes TZS 918,500, TZS 237,000 and TZS 182,100 for farmers, retailers and wholesalers respectively. Field pests and diseases, delays in harvesting or selling and poor storage conditions were the principal causal factors contributing to vegetable postharvest losses along the supply chain. Lastly quantity harvested, education level and access to extension services had significant (p<0.1) positive influence on choice of post-harvest handling techniques while household income and farm-size had significant (p<0.1) negative influence. As a result, there is a need for equipped storage facilities, training on vegetable postharvest handling and marketing, and promotion of simple and cost-effective postharvest technologies among the supply chain actors.
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Agriculture

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