Socio-Economic Determinants of Post-Harvest Losses in the Grape Value Chain in Dodoma Municipality and Chamwino District, Tanzania
Determinants of post-harvest losses (PHLs) in fruits are categorized into biological and environmental. While these are well known and have been discussed by numerous authors, the socio-economic determinants of PHLs are not empirically known. This study analysed the socio-economic determinants of post-harvest losses in grapes along the value chain. A cross-sectional research design was used to collect data from 246 grape farmers and 30 traders who were randomly selected from a list consisting of grape farmers and traders obtained from District Agricultural Irrigation and Cooperative Officers (DAICOs) of the study area. The results from multiple linear regression show that unreliable market, lack of credit, age of grape at harvest, quantity of grapes harvested and experience are the major statistically significant determinants (p<0.05) that influenced the post-harvest losses of grapes at farm level. At traders level, the quantity handled, time grape stay in market before sold and distance from the farm to the market positively and significantly (p<0.05) influenced post-harvest losses of grape. It is concluded that socio-economic determinants greatly influence PHLs of grapes in the study area. Based on the conclusion, the study recommends for interventions by the Government and other stakeholders in grape processing industries to broaden the range of products from grapes through value addition to reduce PHLs and enhance market for grapes. The study recommends further that credits be provided to grape farmers and traders to enable them buy modern post-harvest handling facilities including packaging and storage in order to reduce the losses.