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Small farmers trained in food preservation and processing in Gaza Province

Farmers processing cassava flour
13/11/2018

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is conducting trainings in agro-processing and food conservation of tubers, vegetables and fruits produced locally in the districts of Mapai, Chigubo, Chicualacuala , Guija and Mabalane in the province of Gaza, in the framework of the implementation of the project "Strengthening the Capacities of Agrarian Producers to Manage the Impact of Climate Change", an initiative aimed at improving food security through the Farmer Field School Methodology".

This initiative, funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), aims to improve the conservation and processing of foods such as tomato, pumpkin, cabbage, cassava, sweet potato orange pulp, and some fruits such as banana, papaya, to avoid wasting them in times of surplus.

42 producers, members of the Farmer Field Schools and 15 Agrarian Extensionists from the mentioned districts participate in this training, being capacitated in several techniques of processing locally produced products, in order to guarantee food availability throughout the year and, from this improve food and nutrition security in communities.

During the last agricultural season, southern Mozambique continued under the advent of the "El Niño" phenomenon, characterized by the scarcity of rainfall, according to information from the last agrometeorological bulletin of MASA 2018. The same document indicate that the phenomenon may aggravate the difficult conditions food and nutritional security of the households, especially in the semi-arid regions such as the northern districts of the Gaza Province (Guijá, Mabalane, Mapai, Chicualacuala and Chigubo).

For FAO, food waste is an obstacle to "ending hunger, achieving food security, improving nutrition and promoting sustainable agriculture" in the context of the 17 Goals of the United Nations Sustainable Development Agenda 2030.

FAO data indicate that one-third of all food produced worldwide is wasted. The overall costs of food waste are approximately $ 2.6 trillion per year, including $ 700 billion in environmental costs and $ 900 billion in social costs. Most of the food wasted is a result of problems of recovery in the post-harvest, transportation, storage and preparation phases for consumption.