Recommendations for Reducing Post-Harvest Losses in West Africa
Food and Nutrition on security continues to pose a challenge to West African countries taking into consideration on rising population on growth coupled with dwindling natural resources such as land and the stress posed on water resources by climate change.
Vegetable production is indeed one of the major options that can significantly contribute to food and nutrition on security with limited risk associated to expansion of production land. Vegetables are known to be essential sources of micro nutrients which are critical for reducing high level of under 5 malnutrition on (15%). However, these potentials are hindered by high post-harvest losses at various stages of the vegetable value chain.
In many West African countries, vegetable production, although widespread, continues to be dominated by women and youth who are the most vulnerable sections of the West African population on. The activity therefore is a major contributor to youth employment and a source of stable income for women folk especially rural women.
Definite actions in addressing post-harvest losses in vegetable value chain can stem youth migration on as well as reduce the income gap between men and women in the agriculture sector.