An Overview of Cereal Grain Storage Techniques and Prospects in Africa
Techniques and prospects towards storage of cereals grain in Africa are presented in this work. Cereal grains constitute about 55% of the African food basket and present a challenging task towards its preservation and storage. Storage is particularly important in Africa because agricultural production is mostly seasonal while the demand for agricultural commodities is more evenly spread throughout the year. In this circumstance, there is the need to meet average demand by storing excess supply during the harvesting period for release into the market during the off-season period. Grain storage techniques with particular emphases to cereal grains (maize, wheat, rice, and sorghum) are reviewed. Case studies of Nigeria, Mali, Cameroon, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, South Africa, and Namibia representing the geographical regions of Africa are presented. The storage methods identified include the use of rhombus, traditional cribs, underground pits, open stack storage, woven baskets, grain silos, farm store, communal warehouses and domestic storage techniques. Most of the storage methods experience the problem of insect infestation though at varying level depending on the structure. The use of metal silo is the most effective method of storing grains in Africa, with very high utilization rate in South Africa and spreads across the continent. Despite this fact, it still has the lowest adoption level in Africa as a continent.
Traditional, Structures, Storage, Stored Products, Grains, Cereals, Africa
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