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Agriculture 2015, 5(3), 441-455; doi:10.3390/agriculture5030441

Extension of Small-Scale Postharvest Horticulture Technologies—A Model Training and Services Center

1
World Food Logistics Organization, 1500 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22314, USA
2
Department of Food Science and Technology, University of California, Davis, One Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616, USA
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Michael Blanke
Received: 14 April 2015 / Revised: 23 June 2015 / Accepted: 9 July 2015 / Published: 15 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fresh Produce Wastage)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [197 KB, uploaded 15 July 2015]

Abstract

A pilot Postharvest Training and Services Center (PTSC) was launched in October 2012 in Arusha, Tanzania as part of a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded project. The five key components of the PTSC are (1) training of postharvest trainers, (2) postharvest training and demonstrations for local small-scale clientele, (3) adaptive research, (4) postharvest services, and (5) retail sales of postharvest tools and supplies. During the years of 2011–2012, a one year e-learning program was provided to 36 young horticultural professionals from seven Sub-Saharan African countries. These postharvest specialists went on to train more than 13,000 local farmers, extension workers, food processors, and marketers in their home countries in the year following completion of their course. Evaluators found that these specialists had trained an additional 9300 people by November 2014. When asked about adoption by their local trainees, 79% reported examples of their trainees using improved postharvest practices. From 2012–2013, the project supported 30 multi-day training programs, and the evaluation found that many of the improved practices being promoted were adopted by the trainees and led to increased earnings. Three PTSC components still require attention. Research activities initiated during the project are incomplete, and successful sales of postharvest goods and services will require commitment and improved partnering. View Full-Text
Keywords: postharvest technologies; e-learning; small-scale; impact evaluation; Sub-Saharan Africa postharvest technologies; e-learning; small-scale; impact evaluation; Sub-Saharan Africa
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. (CC BY 4.0).

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Kitinoja, L.; Barrett, D.M. Extension of Small-Scale Postharvest Horticulture Technologies—A Model Training and Services Center. Agriculture 2015, 5, 441-455.

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