Group Takes Re-Usable Plastic Campaign To Markets

Filed in News by on July 15, 2017

Postharvest Loss Alliance for Nutrition (PLAN) under the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) in partnership with the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture, has taken its campaign on promoting the adoption of Returnable Plastic Crates for handling fresh fruits and vegetables to Idera Model market Agege and Oyingbo market, Ebute Metta in Lagos State.

This was aimed at reducing loss associated with the use of weaved raffia baskets in the transportation and storage of farm produce in the country. PLAN said they would equally educate traders on the advantages of using the returnable plastic crates over weaved raffia baskets.

Also, the PLAN campaign is targeted at educating traders on the need to ensure that perishable produce obtained in the state can compete favourably in the international market to bring about conformity to international standards in view of the mega city status attained by Lagos State through the use of approved plastic crates as containers for carriage of perishable agricultural produce.

Speaking at the event, Director Agric Services, Lagos State, Mrs. Ayoade Abiola who was represented by the State Project Officer for Produce Vehicles/ Crate Project, Adegboyega Adebisi, said the commonly used weaved raffia basket is considered unsafe and does not conform to standards, in that the material (raffia/palm fronds) is believed to harbor pathogens which bring about microbial contamination that causes illnesses related to fresh produce consumption by humans.

Also speaking at the PLAN crate sensitization event, Dr. Augustine Okoruwa the Senior Project Manager PLAN who was represented by Ayodele Tella, Senior Associate PLAN said “We are trying to promote the use of returnable plastic crates for handling fresh fruits and vegetables in place of the weaved basket that has been used over the past decades in Nigeria. It has been identified that there is significant postharvest loss along these value chain and we have identified packaging as one of the causative factors for high prevalent losses. We have also identified lack of processing in the value chain.

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