Review Article of American Journal of Agricultural Research
Mechanizing Postharvest Processing Operations: A Panacea For Food Security And Sustainable Rural Development
*ONU, O. O., A. C. ONYENWOKE, K. J. SIMONYAN
Department of Agricultural and Bioresources Engineering, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, P.M.B 7267, Umuahia Abia State, Nigeria.
Food security and sustainable rural development are indispensible ingredients in attaining the Millennium Development goal (MDG) of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger. The reduced time for food preparation and the increasing demand for processed food heighten the need for developing healthy, affordable food products, and appropriate processing systems to provide food to the rapidly growing population in developing countries. Mechanizing postharvest activities has not attracted much attention from international research organizations, while research on the improvement of agricultural production has received considerable attention and funding. However, there is an emerging consensus on the critical role that postharvest systems can play in meeting the overall goals of food security, poverty alleviation and sustainable agriculture particularly in developing countries. This study focuses on the trends in mechanizing various postharvest processing operations, and its impact in attaining food security and sustainable rural development. It also highlights the set-backs to mechanization of postharvest systems.
Keywords: Mechanizing, Postharvest, Food Security, Rural Development, Processing Systems