Understanding postharvest practices, knowledge, and actual mycotoxin levels in maize in three agro-ecological zones in Tanzania

Thumbnail Image
Date
2017-07-01
Authors
Suleiman, R.
Rosentrater, K.
Chove, B.
Major Professor
Advisor
Committee Member
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Publisher
Authors
Person
Rosentrater, Kurt
Professor
Research Projects
Organizational Units
Organizational Unit
Organizational Unit
Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

History
In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

Dates of Existence
1905–present

Historical Names

  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

Related Units

Journal Issue
Is Version Of
Versions
Series
Abstract

Maize is a major cereal crop in Tanzania and it is grown in diverse agro-ecological zones. Like other sub-Saharan countries, postharvest losses of maize during storage in Tanzania remain significantly high, especially for smallholder farmers. Unpredictable weather and poor postharvest practice contribute to rapid deterioration of grain and mold contamination, and subsequent production of mycotoxins. The purpose of this study was to assess awareness and knowledge regarding mycotoxin contamination in maize grain in three agro-ecological zones (Eastern, Central, and Northern) of Tanzania between November 2015 and February 2016. A survey using questionnaires was administered to farmers, traders, and consumers of maize. A total of 90 people (30 from each zone) were surveyed with a response rate of was 96% (87/90). In addition, several samples of maize were collected and analyzed for aflatoxin, fumonisin, and zearalenone contamination to validate the awareness and knowledge of mycotoxin contamination of maize. The result shows a high level of postharvest losses of maize mainly through insect infestation. Moreover, over 80% of the farmers, traders, and consumers of maize were unaware of mycotoxins contamination. All maize samples collected contained detected levels of mycotoxins. The maximum concentration of aflatoxins, fumonisin, and zearalenone in maize samples was 19.20 ppb,, 7.60 ppm, and 189.90 ppb respectively. Education intervention is necessary to decrease the disconnect observed between actual mycotoxin contamination and the awareness and knowledge of farmers, traders, and consumers of maize in Tanzania. Enhancing awareness and knowledge provide the opportunity to educate on post-harvest practices that reduce postharvest losses and mycotoxin of maize in Tanzania.

Comments

This article is from the Journal of Stored Products and Postharvest Research, 8, no. 7 (2017), doi:10.5897/JSPPR2017.0243. Posted with permission.

Description
Keywords
Citation
DOI
Copyright
Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2017
Collections