The Role of Good Post-Harvest Management Practices in the Development of the Agriculture Sector in Ghana
Abstract, Trends & Prospects in Post Harvest Management of Horticultural Crops, 2018
The field of agriculture in Ghana struggles to provide the required ratios of food supply to the Ghanaian citizens due to the high rise in post-harvest losses at the farm, wholesale and retail levels. Despite the fact that farmers work very hard to produce varieties of crops, vegetables and tubers to feed the country, a considerable figure of about 30 % to 45% of the annual total produce is lost due to poor post-harvest handling and treatment practices. This threatens the food and nutrition security of the country, drains the envisioned revenue for agricultural production and the food processing sector, while aggravating the impoverished state of the poor Ghanaian farmer. This chapter is aimed at educating farmers, producers of food and agricultural products, food technologists, food processing companies, personnel in the food processing sector and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture on the concept of post-harvest management, its relevance, causes of the post-harvest losses as well as good and efficient post-harvest management practices that can minimize and/or eradicate completely, post-harvest losses in the agricultural production in Ghana. Application of the sound guidelines and practices in post-harvest management suggested in this chapter will aid arrest the post-harvest challenges and enhance agricultural production in Ghana. This would ultimately boost the economy of the agriculture sector of the country, thereby impacting positively on the lives of farmers and the Ghanaian economy as a whole.
Keywords: Post-harvest Management Practices, Food Processing Sector, Agriculture Production, Post-harvest Losses, Food Science