• Mobile app for cocoa crop in Colombia: challenges and opportunities (2020-03-06)
    Katherin Castro-Ríos, Claudia Nohemy Montoya-Estrada, María-Carolina Cuesta, Alejandro Gutierrez Diaz,

    A study was conducted to keep scientific record of the challenges and opportunities of the insertion of a mobile app for cocoa producers in the Colombia region as a prospective tool or strategy for technological transfer and appropriation into that sector. A survey with structured and semi-structured questions that pertained to cocoa producer men and women was conducted. The questions were related to the general conditions of their labour activities and were discriminant in the following categories: cocoa-grower characteristics, farm conditions, farm characteristics, and cocoa crop. From this information, restrictions and opportunities for use of a mobile app in the cocoa sector were analysed. Smartphones and mobile apps are used by farmers in this sector, even though the quality of service is deficient. An opportunity to include topics on good agricultural practices into mobile apps to enhance the transfer and appropriation of these topics to the crop producers was identified.

  • A.A. Farag The impact of number of polyethylene lateral and mulching soil on vegetative growth and yield of sweet fennel and squash plants (2020-03-31)
    Ahmed Awny Farag, Mohamed Abul-Soud, mohamed Abdrabbo,

    Water shortage under climate change impacts performed the driving forces to enhance the agricultural practices to maximize the food production. Improve the distribution of irrigation water with mulching soil to satisfy the plants needs and provide optimum conditions for production consider the main objective of the current study. Two experiments of the study were conducted out at Central Laboratory for Agriculture Climate (CLAC), Agriculture Research Center, Egypt during winter and spring seasons of 2016/2017 and 2017/2018 under open field conditions. The study objected to investigating the use of different numbers of PE lateral per growing bed (1 (OIL) and 2 (TIL)) with different distance between the inline drippers (30 and 50 cm) on sweet fennel and squash to get the harmony distribution of irrigation in clay soil combined with mulching or bare soil (control).  The trails of the current study presented in split plot design. The vegetative growth characteristics, yield parameters and N, P and K (%) contents of sweet fennel and squash leaves were measured.

    The obtained results indicated that increasing no. of laterals from 1 to 2 laterals /bed while decrease the distance between drippers from 50 to 30 cm led to increase the vegetative characteristics, yield parameters and N, P, K (%) contents of sweet fennel and squash plants as a results of enhancing the soil moisture availability and nutrients uptake. The treatment TIL combined with 30 cm distance between emitters recorded the highest results of sweet fennel and squash followed by TIL combined by 50 cm distance between emitters. Applying black soil mulch led to increase the soil temperature during winter and spring seasons and also enhance the vegetative characteristics, yield parameters as well as N, P, K (%) contents of sweet fennel and squash plants compared to bare soil. Mulching soil led to increase the yield of sweet fennel and squash 35 % more than bare soil.  Include applying two laterals per growing bed and black mulch within the agriculture practices to increase the yield of vegetable crops had a general benefits on food security and mitigation climate change impacts.

  • Household Food Wastage in Albania: Causes, Extent and Implications (2020-04-02)
    Rovena Preka, Sinisa Berjan, Roberto Capone, Hamid El Bilali, Mohammad Sadegh Allahyari, Philipp Debs, Francesco Bottalico, Vesna Mrdalj,

    Food waste (FW) is a very serious issue not only in ethical and social terms, but also given its economic and environmental impacts (cf. resource wastage and depletion). Recent data show that more than half of food wastage in the European Union is generated in households. FW is unfortunately not well addressed in Albania. For this reason, an exploratory online survey was carried out in the period August–November 2016 with 185 Albanians to analyse the causes, extent and implications of household food wastage in Albania. Most of the respondents have a high education level, which might have affected the survey’s outcomes. Nevertheless, results showed that awareness about negative impacts of FW is still low. Alongside, although FW seems high, few public initiatives and campaigns are put in place to tackle the issue. Therefore, it’s time to move towards a comprehensive strategy that raises awareness on FW negative impacts in the Albanian society and increases knowledge on food purchase management, consumption habits and related food storage.

    Oluwaseun Samuel Oduniyi,

    The study was designed to analyse the food expenditure patterns of smallholder farming households. Income and expenditure data were collected from 281 randomly sampled farming households in Shamva District. Descriptive statistics (mean and frequency) were used to analyse the income sources and main expenditure categories. The Ordinary Least Squares regression was used to model the determinants of household food expenditure. The results indicated cash crop, food crop and livestock sales as the major farm income sources. Remittances, wages, salaries and pensions were the major non-farm income sources. Statistics showed that 64% of the cash income was obtained from farm activities. Food expenditure accounted for over 60% of total expenditure. Household size (p<0.05), dependency ratio (p<0.05) and income (cash crop income, food crop income, livestock income and non-farm income) positively affected household food consumption. Age of household head (p<0.01) negatively affected household expenditure. The research results highlight the need for government to channel more resources towards improving smallholder agricultural productivity as the major household income source to foster demand-led agricultural growth and development in rural areas. By implication, this will similarly help to inform policy makers on appropriate instruments to improve income, food security and wellbeing of the farming households.