African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development 2020-08-07T09:31:29+00:00 Prof. Ruth K. Oniang'o, PhD Open Journal Systems <p>The <em>African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development</em> (AJFAND) is a peer reviewed scholarly journal. The journal is envisaged to enable dissemination and sharing of food and nutrition information issues on the continent. It taps social science, biochemical, food and nutrition related research and information. It also addresses issues related to agriculture, food security, and nutrition that affect Africa’s development and people’s livelihoods. It targets and is intended to serve the research and intellectual community; African and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs); African and development oriented bilateral and multilateral agencies; and African public institutions working towards solving food and nutrition problems through sound policies, and addressing issues that affect the African continent. AJFAND is open to both African and non-African contributors. Besides academic research, the journal provides an avenue for sharing information on national-level food and nutrition programs. QUALITY remains the driver of our efforts and not QUANTITY. The journal carries out a major mentoring and capacity building role for budding African scholars, and also gives visibility to African scholars in general by highlighting and sharing their work internationally.</p> <p>Other websites related to this journal:<a title="" href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener"></a>&nbsp;</p> Poultry interventions and child nutritional status in low-income countries 2020-08-06T13:35:31+00:00 A. Omer <p>Poultry production with the majority of free-range chickens is widely practiced in rural communities of low-income countries. Chickens and their&nbsp; eggs are important sources of income and food for the family. Eggs are nutritious with high quality protein and several macro-and micro-nutrients. Evidences showed that increased consumption of eggs improved the nutritional status of children under the age of two years. Projects aimed at increased egg intake among infants and young children have been implemented with different models and approaches, resulting in different outcomes. This paper reviewed the effectiveness of interventional studies in increasing egg intake among infants and young children in low-income countries. A total of eight articles were selected using PubMed and Google Scholar search engines with inclusion criteria of interventions with randomized and controlled study design that measured egg intake among children under the age of two years in low income countries, published in the last five years (from 2015 to 2019) and written in English. The interventions were systematically classified into three categories based on their implementation model: agriculture/poultry only, nutrition education only, and integrated poultry and nutrition interventions. All the models showed<br>increased egg intake with different levels of significance. Poultry only interventions were successful in egg production in excess quantity increasing egg consumption of infants&nbsp; and young children. However, the interventions were challenged by caregivers’ priority for income from the sale of the eggs and birds than feeding the children. Hence, egg intake did not increase high enough to the level of an-egg-a-day despite production and availability. Promoting egg for complementary feeding, interventions of nutrition education only resulted in significantly increased egg intake among children under the age of two years. Nevertheless, its sustainability might be challenged as it requires buying eggs every time, creating an economic burden to the rural low-income families. The third model integrated poultry and nutrition interventions, significantly increased egg consumption even with small scale poultry using local chickens by improving nutrition awareness of caregivers and increasing egg availability at household level, demonstrating greater potential of sustainability. Poultry interventions targeting increased egg intake among infants and young children in low-income countries need to be integrated with nutrition education for maximum effect with minimal cost. Moreover, the&nbsp; implementation of strategies to reduce chicken excreta contamination of the environment is equally important for the children to benefit the maximum from increased egg intake.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: egg intake, poultry, nutrition education, egg-a-day, low-income countries </p> 2020-08-06T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Performance evaluation of a chimney solar dryer for Habanero pepper (<I>Capsicum chinense Jacq</I>) 2020-08-06T14:16:10+00:00 Francis Kumi Jonathan Ampah Robert Sarpong Amoah Anthonia H. Andoh-Odoom Maxwell Kodua <p>Habanero pepper (<em>Capsicum chinense Jacq</em>) is cultivated predominantly in the Volta, Central and Ashanti regions of Ghana and commonly utilised in&nbsp; most local dishes. Majority of consumers prefer the dried form of the pepper. However, farmers are usually confronted with the challenge of&nbsp; obtaining low-cost, locally fabricated dryers that can efficiently dry agricultural produce while mitigating quality and safety concerns. In this study, a model of the newly designed chimney solar dryer by the Horticulture Innovation laboratory of the University of California, Davis, in the United States of America, for crop drying in developing countries was constructed and its performance evaluated in comparison to open sun drying. Habanero pepper was used as a test crop. Subsequently, microbial analysis was carried out on the dried products. The mean chimney dryer temperature (46.4°C) was found to be higher than the ambient temperature (36.2°C). The relative humidity in the chimney solar dryer and the ambient ranged from 25% to 68% and 26% to 83%, respectively. During the period of the drying experiment, mean maximum solar insolation of 823.18 W/m<sup>2</sup> was&nbsp; recorded at 11.30 am while a mean minimum solar insolation of 107.84 W/m<sup>2</sup> was recorded at 4.30 pm. The solar-dried and sun-dried pepper&nbsp; recorded total drying time of 35 h and 55 h respectively. The mean performance coefficient of the chimney solar dryer was determined to be 1.21 which gives an indication of a high dryer performance. The mean yeasts and moulds counts of the solar-dried and sun-dried pepper were 4.30 x 10<sup>4</sup> cfu/g and 2.52 x 10<sup>5</sup> cfu/g, respectively. Also, the Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli counts were &lt;10 cfu/g for samples in both drying media. In conclusion, the chimney solar dryer was found to have performed better than open sun drying with shorter drying time and better quality<br>of the dried product.</p> <p><strong>Key words:</strong> chimney, habanero pepper, open sun drying, performance, quality, solar dryer </p> 2020-08-06T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Processing variations, nutritional and sensory quality of ethnic deep-fried meats from Kenyan pastoral communities 2020-08-06T14:40:40+00:00 J.N. Gichure C.N. Kunyanga J.K. Imungi <p>Deep-frying of meats has been done by indigenous pastoral communities from time immemorial for the unique taste, flavor, and exceptional shelf- stability. Traditional pastoral deep-fried meats have great potential as snacks in the global food basket due to their unique nutritional qualities and high satiety. Lost and weakening cultural ties have led to disparities in the deep-frying processing hurdles within and between different&nbsp; communities. The goal of this research was to study the peculiarities and uncover processing variations of ethnic deep-fried meats from indigenous people of the pastoral semi-arid lands and to explore how this translates to nutritional and sensory attributes of selected products from Kenya. A cross-sectional survey was conducted in Turkana, Kajiado, and Marsabit counties with data collected using Focus Group Discussions (FGDs). From each focus group, samples of the deep-fried meats were analyzed for nutritional and sensory characteristics using standard methods. Notable&nbsp; variations in the deep-frying process observed were the size of chunks, pre-drying techniques prior to deep-frying, and choice of deep-frying media. Shelf stability was achieved by oilencapsulating the chunks in solidified deep-frying media, fumigation of traditional packaging containers with smoke, and the use of spices. Variations on proximate contents were observed with moisture ranging between 8.1% and 28.5%, protein between 42.6% and 46.9%, lipids between 15.4% and 37.9%, ash between 3.1% and 4.3%, and energy between 424 Kcal/100g and 542 Kcal/100g. Differences in processing hurdles and storage contributed to variations in sensory attributes with pre-drying, smoking, and choice of deep-frying media contributing to the greatest variabilities. This notwithstanding, the study revealed a limitation on use of semi-trained panelists to bring out deep-cultural rooted ties that play a big role in the sensory acceptability of these indigenous products calling for caution before the interpretation of sensory data. In conclusion, variations in size of chunks, pre-drying technique, choice of deep-frying media, oil-encapsulation, and smoking among ethnic communities during the deepfrying process significantly contribute to differences in nutritional and sensory characteristics of deep-fried products.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: pastoral meat, ethnic meat, indigenous, deep-fried meat, nutrition quality, sensory quality</p> 2020-08-06T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Effect of partial substitution of wheat flour with Tamarind seed flour on physical, chemical, antioxidant and sensory properties of noodles 2020-08-06T15:16:48+00:00 N. Uthai L. Chetyakamin <p>Tamarind (<em>Tamarindus indica L.</em>) fruit are a major crop of Thailand and many other countries. Tamarind fruit are used in food processing, but their&nbsp; seeds, which constitute about 34% of each fruit, are largely a wasted byproduct. Production of fresh noodles, using flour made from tamarind seed (TSF) as a partial substitute for wheat flour, was tested. The proportion of TSF in the flour was varied from 0, 5, 10, 15 and 20%, with the balance being white wheat flour. Results showed that with increasing the levels of TSF in the flour there was a concomitant increase in their carotenoid content, but 15% resulted in negative responses from the sensory evaluation panel due mainly to darkening and browning of the color of the noodles and making them less soft and less elastic. These perceptions by the panelists were reflected in the measurement of L*, a* and b* and the tensile force of dough and tensile strength of cooked noodles. When the noodles made from 10% TSF plus 90% wheat flour were tested, their moisture content, protein, total carbohydrate, fat and ash were 70.6, 6.26, 21.5, 1.08, 0.490 g/100g and calories was 121 kcal/100g, respectively and their mineral contents were calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and sodium at 16.0, 14.4, 45.3, 27.2 and 130 mg/100g, respectively. Total phenolic content and antioxidant activity also progressively increased with increasing levels of TSF in the flour. The total phenolic content from noodles made from 10% TSF plus 90% refined wheat flour were 7.92 mg GAE/g, antioxidant activity was 29.6 mM TE/g by ferric reducing antioxidant power, 17.1 mM TE/g by 2,2 diphenyl- 1-picrylhydrazyl assay and 3.84 mM TE/g by 2,2'-azino-bis (3-ethylbenzothiazo line-6- sulphonic acid). The descriptive analysis of eight trained panelists discovered 16 individual attributes of cooked noodles made from 10% TSF plus 90% wheat flour.<br>These attributes were yellowness, turbidity, egg odor, flour odor, tamarind flour odor, roasted tamarind seed odor, alkaline odor, egg flavor, flour flavor, tamarind flour flavor, roasted tamarind seed flavor, bitter taste, wetness, smoothness, softness and elasticity. The descriptive analysis showed that the cooked noodles containing 10% TSF had similar characteristics to cooked noodles made from 100% wheat flour except for roasted tamarind seed odor, tamarind flour flavor and roasted tamarind seed flavor that were unique characteristics, as would be expected.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: Antioxidant activity, Chemical properties, Noodle, Sensory attributes, Tamarind seeds flour </p> 2020-08-06T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Financial performance and constraints in Gari Production in Kumasi, Ghana 2020-08-07T05:30:53+00:00 F. Nimoh Anaman R. Richmond M.T. Asiamah B. Yeboah I. Agyekum P.D.K. Kpe D.K. Kouao <p>Gari is a crisp and crunchy West African food made from grated cassava with the excess liquid dried out. It is a major food security product&nbsp; consumed by most households and students in second cycle institutions in West African. Gari production is an important source of livelihood for many women in the informal sector in Ghana. It serves as a vital avenue for value addition to cassava, thus helping to address the problem of post-harvest losses and generating income for producers. This study assessed the financial performance and constraints in gari production in Kumasi, Ghana. Primary data from a cross-sectional survey of 46 gari producers who were identified using snowball sampling technique was used. Descriptive statistics, profitability indicators, and a 5-point Likert scale were used to analyse the primary data. Results showed that gari production is<br>predominantly done by women 30-75 years old with a mean age of 50 years. Majority of producers had no formal education (57%) and had been in production for an average of 24 years. It was found that gari production in Kumasi is financially profitable, with all the profitability indicators employed showing positive returns on inputs employed in production, although the values were less competitive relative to other producers’ values<br>elsewhere. The profit margin was favourable at 22%, return on capital employed (ROCE) at 29% and operating expense ratio at 76%. The relatively low ROCE of 29% compared with the opportunity cost of capital (31%) by commercial banks in the study area indicates the underutilization of producers’ capital in gari production. Key constraints identified in the gari production business were seasonality and high cost of cassava. Adoption of cost-effective management strategies and release of all year round cassava varieties could help improve gari production and livelihoods of producers and other actors along the cassava value chain.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: Cassava, Gari, Production, Profitability, Constraints, Women, Livelihood, Kumasi-Ghana</p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Potential of using <i>Amaranthus</i> leaves to fortify instant noodles in the south african context: A review 2020-08-07T05:59:09+00:00 N.D. Qumbisa N. Ngobese U. Kolanisi <p>There has been a significant increase in the consumption of instant noodles among the youth, especially students. According to literature, instant&nbsp; noodles are preferred because of their taste, extended shelf life, cheap price as well as convenience, which suit the busy lifestyle of the student&nbsp; population. However, it has been highlighted that instant noodles are not always a healthy food choice. The nutrient quality compromise poses a&nbsp; negative impact on the functioning of the body, which could affect the student’s nutrition negatively. The objective of the study was, therefore, to determine the potential of Amaranthus leaf powder in fortifying instant noodles. Articles looking at instant noodle utilization and consumption by students as well as Amaranthus use, perceptions and utilization were used in this narrative review. These were selected and grouped by the authors according to the sub-topics mentioned above. Literature reports that instant noodles can be fortified by substituting wheat flour with Amaranthus grain flour. Studies on Amaranthus snacks and other starch-based foods using the leaf part have been reported but the fortification of noodles with Amaranthus leaf powder is not documented. The findings on the consumer acceptability of Amaranthus leaf powder-fortified foods have reported lower acceptability. This is due to unfamiliar sensory attributes such as a green color and a ‘leafy’ taste. Amaranthus is still perceived as food for&nbsp; poor and backward people, which contributes to lower acceptability of the plant to the youth. Nevertheless, Amaranthus leaves are considerably nutritious and the incorporation in staple foods could maximise crop utilization. Therefore, incorporation of Amaranthus with the noodles could lead to instant noodle indigenization in South Africa and give a sense of identity to the future generations. Furthermore, Amaranth-fortified noodles<br>could sustain the utilization of traditional foods, promoting local-based food systems and help reduce unemployment among the youth.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: instant noodles; consumer acceptability; morogo; fortification; imbuya, underutilized vegetables </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Nutritional value of selected wild edible plants in Teso-Karamoja Region, Uganda 2020-08-07T06:34:13+00:00 S. Ojelel P. Mucunguzi J. Kalema E.K. Kakudidi M. Namaganda E. Katuura <p>The use of wild plants for food in the rural communities of Uganda is widespread. This is attributed to food scarcity, perceived nutritional value,&nbsp; medicinal and health benefits and cultural preservation. However, the claims on the nutritional value of some wild edible plant species have not&nbsp; been fully validated. In cognizance of this, the macroelement, beta-carotene and ascorbic acid profile of five wild plants commonly used for food in and around eight forest reserves of Teso-Karamoja region, Uganda, were analysed. The plants prioritized for analysis were Vigna kirkii (Baker)<em> J.B. Gillett, Maerua angolensis D.C., Leptadenia hastata (Schumach. &amp; Thonn.) Decne, Senna obtusifolia (L.) H.S. Irwin &amp; Barneby</em> and<em> Dioscorea sp</em>.). The&nbsp; macro-element, ascorbic acid and beta-carotene composition of these plants was analyzed in triplicate. The variance in parameter means was&nbsp; analysed using one-way Analysis of Variance in SPSS ver. 16.0. The results showed that all the means of species were significantly different at the p=0.05 level. The highest macro-nutrient means were 80.74±0.34 %/100 g moisture content in <em>V. kirkii,</em> 3.95±0.23 g/100 g ash content in <em>M.&nbsp; angolensis,</em> 19.04±0.37 Kcal gross energy in <em>M. angolensis</em>, 27.93±0.85 g/100 g dietary fibre in <em>L. hastat</em>a, 3.40±0.13 g/100 g crude fat in <em>L. hastata,</em> 65.43±2.91 g/100 g carbohydrate in Dioscorea sp., 36.37±0.42 g/100 g crude protein in<em> M. angolensis.</em> The highest ascorbic acid mean was 14.71±3.56 mg/100 g in <em>M. angolensis</em> while beta-carotene was 1082.1±0.08 μg/100 g in <em>S. obtusifolia.</em> These results show that these wild edible plants have a significantly variable nutritional value. Some of the macro elements can sufficiently meet the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) and Adequate Intakes (AI) for certain life stages and groups if consumed in ideal quantities. This information is vital in enhancing food and nutrition security awareness in the community and uplifting the social appeal and acceptability of these plants. This can be enhanced by investigating the micro-nutrients of public health significance, anti-nutrient factors, and toxic compounds in these plants.</p> <p><strong>Key words:</strong> Nutritional value, wild edible plants, macro-nutrient, ascorbic acid, betacarotene,Teso-Karamoja, Uganda</p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Nutrient content of on-farm formulated Nile tilapia (<I>Oreochromis niloticus</I>) feeds: Implications for the aquaculture industry in Kenya 2020-08-07T06:57:52+00:00 M.K. Muteti M.N.I. Lokuruka A.W. Yasindi <p>Due to the high costs and the unavailability of good quality fish feeds in Kenya, farmers have opted to use cheaper, locally available on-farm&nbsp; formulated feeds. In spite of this, farmers continue to incur losses probably due to poor nutritive quality of these on-farm feeds. Furthermore, literature on the proximate composition and appropriateness of on farm formulated feeds for raising farmed fish in Kenya is scanty. Motivated by these reasons, this study sought to investigate the proximate composition of on-farm formulated Nile tilapia feeds and selected commercial fish&nbsp; feeds used in Bomet, Kericho and Nakuru Counties of the Rift Valley Region of Kenya and compared the proximate composition with the official nutrient composition of fish feeds. The method of feed formulation used was also investigated using semi-structured questionnaires. The study also estimated the weight of fish harvested at the end of a production cycle. The results revealed a significant difference between the sampled feeds’ moisture, crude protein and mineral contents and the legislated nutrient levels of the commercial feeds commonly used in the counties. There was also a significant difference between the crude protein content of feeds in the three counties (P &lt; 0.05). More than 50% of respondent farmers in the three counties used Pearson Square Method for fish feed formulation, while the rest used the trial and error method. The mean weight of fish during harvest was 311.5±155.8 g with fish from Kericho County weighing significantly lower than those from Nakuru and Bomet Counties (P &lt; 0.05). Most of the on-farm formulated feeds from the three counties do not meet the recommended nutrient requirements for raising Nile Tilapia. This may be contributing to the observed low weights of the fish harvested, the low fish production and the apparent stagnation of the aquaculture sub-sector in Kenya. The study recommends the formulation of good quality fish feeds through the use of proper methods and appropriate ingredients. This could be achieved through monthly farmers’ trainings on best aquaculture practices.</p> <p><strong>Key words:</strong> On- farm formulated feeds, fish feed quality, Nutrients, Nile tilapia, Kenya&nbsp; </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon content in sausage smoked using a polish traditional method 2020-08-07T07:09:36+00:00 K. Choroszy K. Tereszkiewicz <p>Smoking is one of the oldest and most frequently used methods of preserving meat and its products. In Poland, smoking using a traditional method is still a commonly practised form of preserving meat products. It is conducted in smoking chambers, using a process in which the hardwood of deciduous trees with the level of humidity between 10% and 30% is burnt as the source of smoke and heat. The aim of this research was to assess the impact of selected polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) on traditionally smoked sausage, a cured meat product. The presence of PAHs in the environment and food products is undesirable due to their proven carcinogenic, mutagenic and teratogenic properties. In the present study, the level of four PAHs, which included benzo(a)pyrene, chrysene, benzo(a)antracene and benzo(b)fluoranthene, was measured using highperformance<br>liquid chromatography. The temperature in the furnace was maintained between 600 and 850°C. The duration of smoking was varied – 4-5, 5-6, 6-7 and 7-8 hours. Results showed that the time span of traditional smoking influences the products’ benzo(a)pyrene, benzo(a)antracene and&nbsp; benzo(b)fluoranthine contamination levels. The concentration of PAHs in products with the smoking time of 6-7 and 7-8 hours was higher than the concentration observed in products with a shorter smoking time. The changes in the sum of the concentrations of the four analysed PAHs resulted from the changes in the concentration of each hydrocarbon separately. Benzo(a)anthracene content was within the range of 11.17 and 14.19 μg/kg while the content of benzo(a)pyrene was between 4.15 and 7.69 μg/kg. The average value of benzo(b)fluoranthene was between 4.99 and 7.75 μg/kg. Chrysene contamination was within the range of 9.85 and 10.77 μg/kg. Moreover, it was found that the aggregate content of the analysed PAHs significantly exceeds the limits specified in European Union regulations. Since September 1, 2014, the limits were decreased to 2.0 μg/kg (benzo(a)pyrene) and 12.0 μg/kg (sum of four PAHs), respectively. The results suggest that the prolonged smoking process conducted in high temperature may be an impediment to approving the examined products for marketing.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: smoking, food, safety, PAHs, quality management, smoking time, traditional smoking </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) The potential of <I>Uapaca kirkiana</I> fruit jam for the delivery of <I>Lactobacillus rhamnosus</I> yoba as a probiotic food 2020-08-07T07:37:49+00:00 A. Chawafambira M.M. Sedibe A. Mpofu M.C. Achilonu <p>Probiotics are important in enhancing food quality, reducing incidences of diarrhoea and promoting good health. A fruit jam is an ideal food to deliver probiotics because it is easy to produce, a good source of sugar, and most rural population consume it. A probiotic jam was developed using an underutilised fruit, U. kirkiana, to benefit the resource-poor population in southern Africa. U. kirkiana fruit is found abundant in most semi-dry rural areas of Zimbabwe. Ripe U. kirkiana fruits were obtained from preferred domesticated trees by households residing in semi-dry rural areas of Zimbabwe. The fruits were pulped by removing seeds, mashing and sieving through an 800 μM sieve. Pectin content of the pulp was determined. A probiotic jam was developed using the formulation 55 % (wt/vol) pulp, 43 % (wt/vol) sugar, 1.5 % (wt/vol) pectin, and 0.5 % (wt/vol) citric acid. The fruit pulp was mixed with sugar in a stainless steel pot and cooked at 110 °C. Citric acid was added and stirred whilst cooking until it reached 55 oBrix. Pectin was added and the jam was continuously stirred until it reached 68 oBrix. The jam was inoculated with 0.25 % <em>L. rhamnosus</em> yoba and left to propagate for 24 hours, while bacterial growth was monitored. The physicochemical and functional properties (pH, total soluble solids, sugars, total titratable acidity, iron content, zinc content, and vitamin C), and L. rhamnosus yoba viability in the probiotic jam was analysed. The probiotic jam had vitamin C, total titratable acidity, total soluble solids, and moisture content of 0.34 ±0.02 mg /100 g FW, 2.2 ± 0.11 g / L FW, 68.5 ± 0.2 % FW, and 34.8 ± 1.2 % FW, respectively; iron and zinc content of 4.13 ± 0.52 mg /100 g FW and 0.36 ± 0.02 mg /100 g FW, respectively; high&nbsp; fructose and sucrose content of 12.84 ± 0.21 g /100 g FW and 24.61 ± 0.12 g /100 g FW, respectively; and a total titratable acidity content of 2.2 g / L at day 0 (after production), 2.37 ± 0.01 g / L FW at day 4, and 2.48 ± 0.02 g / L FW at day 7 of storage (25 °C). The probiotic jam had 6.2 ± 0.2 Log CFU / mL viable cells on point of consumption. <em>U. kirkiana</em> fruit jam can potentially deliver live <em>L. rhamnosus</em> yoba cells as a probiotic food.</p> <p><strong>Key words:</strong> Probiotic food, vitamin C, fruit jam,<em> L. rhamnosus yoba,</em> pectin, U. kirkiana fruit, sub-Saharan Africa</p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Development and utilization of a decision support tool for the optimization of fertilizer application in smallholder farms in Uganda 2020-08-07T08:16:25+00:00 H. Rware K.M. Kansiime J. Watiti J. Opio C. Alokit C.K. Kaizzi A. Nansamba G. Oduor H. Mibei <p>This paper presents the development and pilot of the Fertilizer Optimization Tool (FOT), a decision support tool for use by extension agents in&nbsp; advising smallholder farmers in Uganda in applying optimum (rather than maximum) fertilizer by considering the farmers’ financial abilities. The FOT is made up of three components which includes, the optimizer tool, the nutrient substitution table, and a fertilizer calibration tool. The FOT was developed using field trial data collected on specific agro-ecological zones and mapped using global positioning systems in 13 Sub-Saharan Africa countries. The FOT provides site- and farmer-specific fertilizer recommendations, providing both economic and environmental benefits. Results are based on a survey of 241 households, 57 technical personnel and tracking of 33 FOT users over a 3-season period. Results show a progressive shift in farmers’ attitude towards the value of fertilizer. More FOT users (71%) disagreed with the statement that fertilizers destroy soils, compared with&nbsp; non-FOT users (52%). Crop yields (tons/ha) were significantly higher for crops receiving fertilizers compared to those not. While it is generally accepted that using fertilizer improves crop response and achieves better yields, the value of FOT was reported in terms of rationalization of investment by farmers. The average seasonal investment was approx. $43, giving a return on investment of over 107%. Given the evidence&nbsp; generated from Uganda, there is a need for considering out scaling the FOT technology to other countries in Africa, which are faced with the same challenges of low fertilizer use among smallholder farmers. Using the mobile FOT app provides a further cost-effective opportunity to out scale the approach to benefit more smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa. Further development of the FOT is suggested, particularly in the wake of increased focus on multi-nutrient fertilizer blends, and the need to adjust for soil PH, moisture, and long-term impacts of nutrient substitution.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: decision support tool, fertilizer optimization tool, precision agriculture, site-specific fertilizer recommendations</p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) A contingent valuation approach to estimating willingness to pay for fish solar drying technology: Case of Western Shore of Lake Malawi 2020-08-07T08:33:26+00:00 R. Makwinja F. Kapute <p>For many years, open sun drying (OSD) has been the common way of preserving fish among the fishing households in Malawi. The main limitations of this technique have been increased fish quality deterioration and microbial contamination. Two fish solar dryers (FSD) were constructed under the SEEDFISH project along the Western Shore of Lake Malawi (WSLM) as a way of minimizing the effects of using OSD and provide a better way of drying fish in the area. The FSD though adopted, the fishing households have been seeking alternatives for its sustenance. This study estimates the households’ willingness to pay (WTP) and their influencing factors while using contingent valuation (CV) approaches. A wide range of data collection methods (exploratory surveys, focus group discussions, key informant interviews, and field observations) was employed. A total of 200 fishing households were randomly interviewed. The results showed that 144 (72.4%) of the respondents were willing to pay because the FSD was seen as a&nbsp; way of mitigating the climate change impact, improving livelihoods, and reducing post-harvest losses. The mean annual aggregate WTP amount was estimated at MK3,648,750 (US$4,865). Those households (27.6%) not willing to pay argued that they had a low level of income while others could not see any value of the FSD. The regression coefficients of age and gender of household head (GHH) were negative (β =-6.02 and<br>Wald of 5.34, β = -6.92, Wald of 2.01) and significant (p&lt;0.05) suggesting that young people were more WTP than their counterpart. Males also coded as 0 were more willing to pay than females. On the other hand, household literacy level (HLL), household involved in fish processing (HIVFP), household social trust (HST), household institutional trust (HIT), household level of income (HLI), household experienced fish post-harvest losses (HEFPL), household access to extension services (HAE) and household social network (HSN) were positive (β = 2.97, Wald of 7.11, β = 6.37 and<br>Wald of 5.41, β = 3.03 and Wald of 6, β = 11.2, Wald 9.02, β = 2.42, Wald of 8, β = 0.93, Wald of 4,81 and β = 2.50, Wald 2.10) and significant (p&lt;0.05) suggesting that those HIVFP, had high HLL, HLI, HST, HIT, HSN and HEFPL were more willing to pay than their counterpart. These findings provide comprehensive baseline data for local government and communities in the development of more effective and holistic approaches to improving communities’ climate change resilience.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: Contingent valuation, Fish solar dryer, Lake Malawi, Willingness to pay </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) A survey of dairy-goat keeping in Zanzibar 2020-08-07T08:48:48+00:00 T.F. Stone C.A Francis L.O. Eik <p>Dairy goats with improved genetics for milk production were recently introduced onto small-scale farms in Zanzibar through governmental and non-governmental projects. These projects were meant to support small-scale farmers by improving both income and household nutrition through milk production. No follow up had been conducted to understand what effects dairy goat keeping had on these small-scale farms, or how they could be improved. A survey of 193 dairy goat farmers in Zanzibar was conducted, including 30% and 60% of all dairy goat farmers on Unguja and Pemba, the two largest islands, respectively. The objective was to understand the impact keeping dairy goats has on small-scale farming systems, current husbandry practices including feed supply (production and environmental concerns), perceived benefits and challenges of dairy goat keeping (economics), and how to design appropriate extension programs to increase sustainability (education). The survey with 116 questions explored topics including dairy goat feeding practices, goat health, current milk production practices, sale and family consumption, and education. Qualitative and quantitative information from the survey led to a more holistic understanding of dairy goats in the farm system. The survey established the key challenges limiting dairy goat production to be diseases (57% of respondents), feed shortage during dry season (49%), economic constraints (21%), lack of healthcare (18%), and lack of dairy goat husbandry information which would help farmers address the other challenges listed above (14%). Two challenges identified through later workshops were uncontrolled crossbreeding and lack of records. Key benefits of dairy goat keeping are increased income from selling live animals and milk (35%), manure (33%), milk (18%), and improved household nutrition (15%). Twelve percent of respondents reported no benefit from keeping dairy goats. Average milk production for dairy goats was 0.92 L per day for three months of the year, whereas local meat goats milk production peaks at about 0.3 L per day, only enough milk to feed their young. To make dairy goat keeping worthwhile, small-scale farmers need access to appropriate animal health care, milk markets, and additional dairy goat husbandry<br>training. The findings of this survey will guide design of education and improvements to the overall profitability and sustainability of dairy goat integration in Zanzibar and provide a model for the humid tropics.</p> <p><strong>Key words:</strong> dairy goat, tropical husbandry, small-scale farming systems, sustainability, agroecology </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Plant derived powders as alternatives for <I>Sitophilus oryzae L</I>. (Coleoptera: <I>Curculionidae</I>) control in stored maize grains 2020-08-07T09:05:05+00:00 M.D. Sitoe P.M.O.J. Neves J. Zorzete <p>Maize is the major staple food in Africa. In developing countries, post-harvest losses due to insect pests are up to 40% of total production. Inert&nbsp; powders can be alternative tools in integrated pest management programs of stored cereals. The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy of ashes from cashew (<em>Anacardium occidentale</em>) branches, charcoal powder, dried and milled <em>Eucalyptus citriodora</em> leaves, and diatomaceous earth&nbsp; (standard check), for <em>Sitophilus oryzae</em> control on stored maize grains. The experimental design was completely randomized with 11 treatments and 4 replications. Insect introduction was carried out immediately after treatment application and at 30 and 60 days after. The mortality assessment was performed by counting the dead insects at 10 and 20 days after each infestation. The emergence of S. oryzae adults was also assessed at three different times. The germination of treated grains was also evaluated. Data analysis was performed on the SISVAR statistical package. Diatomaceous earth showed maximum control efficiency (73.75%) at 10-day evaluation, reaching total control at a 20-day evaluation. The remaining treatment control efficiency was below 50% in all concentrations and evaluations. The lowest insect emergence rates were observed in grains treated with diatomaceous earth or charcoal powder, which were more efficient than cashew ashes, <em>Eucalyptus citriodora</em>, and untreated control. There was no&nbsp; significant effect of the tested products on seed germination so, they can be used in smallholder farmers' grain storage. The results allow us to affirm that <em>Eucalyptus citriodora</em> charcoal powder, and cashew ashes can be used to reduce Sitophilus oryzae damage in traditional agricultural systems. Considering the reduction in the <em>Sitophilus oryzae</em> progeny, the potential use of charcoal powder should be considered, given the efficiency compared to that of the diatomaceous earth. Thus, the plant-derived products tested in this study has the potential to be used in the integrated management of <em>Sitophilus oryzae</em> in stored products.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: Ash, Charcoal, Diatomaceous earth, inert, dust, maize, storage, pest </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Growth and yield performance of common bean (<I>Phaseolus vulgaris L.</I>) as influenced by plant density at Nyagatare, East Rwanda 2020-08-07T09:14:51+00:00 R.F. Musana F.X. Rucamumihigo D. Nirere S.R. Mbaraka <p>Common bean (<em>Phaseolus vulgaris L</em>.) is one of the most important priority crops grown in Rwanda. It is utilized as a staple food and is consumed as&nbsp; edible seeds and pods for provision of proteins. Best agronomic practices that would promote its optimum growth and maximum yield should be recommended. Plant density affects productivity of common bean and optimizing it would increase light interception by the crop and<br>minimize competition between plants, resulting into improved crop growth rate and yield. To determine the effect of plant density on common bean growth and yield, four different plant densities: 200,000, 250,000, 300,000, 350,000 plants/ha were investigated in a randomized complete block design, with three replications. Interaction effects between plant density with these parameters: plant height, plant biomass, number of pod per plant, 100grain weight and yield were assessed using analysis of variance (ANOVA). Results indicated that plant height was significantly affected by bean planting density (P&lt;0.001), and was significantly higher in 350,000 plants ha<sup>-1</sup> than for all other plant densities. Bean biomass was significantly affected by plant density (p=0.007) and was significantly higher in 250,000 plants ha<sup>-1</sup>. Bean planting density significantly affected the number of pods plant-1(P&lt;0.001) and total bean yield (P&lt;0.001). The number of pods plant<sup>-1</sup> was highest at 249.5% using 200,000 plants ha<sup>-1</sup> while 350,000 plants ha<sup>-1</sup> density produced the lowest number of pods plant-1. Bean yield was significantly higher in 250,000 plants ha-1 and lowest in 350,000 plants ha-1. Hundred (100) grains weight was significantly affected by plant density (p&lt;0.001). The highest 100 grains weight was found in 200,000 plant ha-1 while the lowest was found in 350,000 plants ha<sup>-1</sup>. These results indicate that 250,000 plants ha-1 population favors higher bean growth and grain yield. This study will provide an important basis to establish appropriate planting densities recommended for the bean crop in different agro-ecological zones of Rwanda.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: Common bean, plant density, plant growth, field performance, biomass, yield </p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c) Couscous manufacture in fluidized bed by wet agglomeration of wheat semolina 2020-08-07T09:28:37+00:00 O. Soulimani S. Dounit M. Bouhadda <p>Agglomeration is a key unitary operation in a number of industries (pharmaceutical, chemical, food, civil engineering). The agglomeration process controls the structural characteristics and final properties of agglomerates. One of the activities involving food agglomeration is the production of&nbsp; couscous by agglomeration of durum wheat semolina. Couscous is considered the most important traditional dish among the Maghreb people. The industrial process of couscous production includes various stages, the most important of which is wet granulation of semolina, which contributes to the quality of the final product. The agglomeration of cereal powders from different origins (durum wheat, maize and barley) has been performed in a variety of equipment such as high shear mixers, drum mills and fluidized beds. However, the agglomeration of semolina in fluidized beds has had very limited study. The purpose of this research is, therefore, to study couscous production using durum wheat semolina in a fluidized bed equipped with a spray nozzle. The fluidized bed has the advantage of generating strong particle movement and intense mixing to increase the size of the granules evenly throughout the mass used.The efficiency of this process is determined by the couscous yield defined as the mass ratio of couscous to raw material. The results showed that couscous can be produced from semolina by wet fluidized bed agglomeration with a specific effect of fluidification air flow, liquid flow, bed temperature and spray liquid properties on the couscous quality (size, brittleness and morphology) as well as on yield. The latter rose by 60% when the water containing flour was sprayed. Furthermore, the results of this study showed that granules size changes directly with the liquid flow rate, while temperature and air flow have an opposite effect. It was also found that changing binder components have an effect on the quality of the agglomeration of the product.</p> <p><strong>Key words</strong>: Couscous, agglomeration, fluidization, semolina, friability, granulation, atomization, size enlargement, drying</p> 2020-08-07T00:00:00+00:00 Copyright (c)