Saima et al
Greener Journal of Agricultural Sciences Vol. 4 (5), pp. 195-198, June 2014.
Manuscript Number: 042914208
Value Addition: A Tool to Minimize the Post-harvest Losses in Horticultural Crops
*Saima Parveen, Bushra Ishfaq, Humaira Kausar, Shazia Saeed and M. Azhar Ali
Assistant Research Officer, Food Technology Section. AARI, Faisalabad.
*Corresponding Author’s Email: email@example.com
Current regional economic intensification and changes in dietary patterns played a vital role in both the production and consumption of fruit and vegetables. Pakistan is one of the leading producer of citrus; mango, apricot, dates and huge amounts of potatoes, tomatoes, pepper, onions, cucumber etc. are grown in its diverse agro-ecological zones. In spite of high yield, this sector suffers significantly from postharvest losses ofabout 30–40%, because inherently this sector are more liable to deteriorative nature of fresh fruit and vegetables under tropical conditions characterized by high ambient temperatures and humidity, and a high incidence of pests and diseases which diminishes returns for producers. Tremendous opportunities exists for vertical diversification within the fruit and vegetable sector in terms of increase in farm income, poverty alleviation, food security, and sustainable agriculture. The vibrant agro-food industry have unlimited potential in the form of processed or value added products and consumers all over the country can get opportunity to enjoy them throughout the year. In this transaction, processing of food crops into a variety of products with extended shelf life. Adding value to the original crop also helps the farmer not only to overcome the spoilage and losses, but also fetches high returns due to the newly added technology. Value addition enterprises are aimed at giving value to the raw commodities into multiple products like fruit candies, jam, jellies, marmalade, fruit nectars, juices, dehydrated products and semi-processed food etc. which we can envisage in this category as well as remunerative prices to farmers. It provides convenience & safe food to consumers and promotes diversification and commercialization of agriculture by providing effective linkage between consumers and farmers. Moreover, it will make farm produce more exportable. The need for technology generation and commercialization at small scale are of critical importance to growth and diversification. The development of a dynamic agro-food industry will depend on innovative research and the deliberate engagement of the national inventive system comprising academia, industry, and government sector.
Keywords: Economic value, horticultural crops, industries, post-harvest losses, processing, value addition.
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