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close this bookGATE - 1/87 - Research and Development (GTZ GATE, 1987, 52 p.)
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Food Processing Roofing Development Policy

Processing of Tropical Products

There is a considerable body of literature which gives reason to believe that the food problems in the developing countries can be reduced, even eliminated, by intensifying agricultural production. Emphasis in agricultural research for many years has therefore been on increased crop production. It was not until the mid-1970s that preservation and processing of tropical products became a widely acknowledged alternative or supplement to increased crop production as a significant means of increasing food availability- leading to reduced post-harvest loss. This acknowledgment has become more important in recent years with the realization that the growth of population in the developing countries is outstripping the current food supply, which is already seriously insufficient.

Most tropical products are highly susceptible to spoilage due, among other factors, to adverse climatic conditions in the tropics. This leads to substantial postharvest losses, the exact magnitude of which is a matter of speculation. Added to the adverse climatic conditions and the poor infrastructure is the fact that most of the tropical crops are seasonal; accordingly, periodic gluts of fresh products are sold at giveaway prices while off-season shortages are accompanied by high prices. The resultant effect on the national economy and the well-being of the people cannot be over-emphasized.

Processing of tropical agricultural crops into storable food products is as old as mankind. In Africa and in Central and South America the preparation of storable maize or cassava products through fermentation is a widespread tradition. The same applies to South-East Asia and China in the case of soya sauce preparation.

Reduction of post-harvest losses through processing depends on the proper use of existing traditional methods and recent developments derived from a broad spectrum of scientific disciplines. Biochemistry, physiology, physics and engineering all provide knowledge which has been useful and will continue to be useful in the future for improving the traditional methods.

If one scans through the literature on processing of tropical crops, it soon becomes evident that a considerable amount of information has been scattered over a multitude of journals. Unfortunately, no attempts have hitherto been made to collect or compile this useful information. It is against this background that an attempt has been made in this book to compile and evaluate and to complement, wherever necessary, the investigations on processing and physical/chemical properties of some tropical crops.

This book describes the existing traditional methods of processing various tropical products with detailed graphic flow charts, the technologies and equipment involved in the process and also describes the chemical and physical properties of the respective crops. To a lesser extent, advanced processing methods are included. The book offers food technologists and engineers, biochemists, development aid workers, manufacturers of processing equipment and food scientists a useful source of information on the possibilities of processing. It also serves as a text for a variety of science courses, including Food Technology, Food Engineering and Chemistry and Nutrition al undergraduate level.

Up-do-date references have been cited at the end of each chapter to establish authority and to assist the reader who is interested in studying the related topics in more detail.

Given the importance of the agricultural processing sector and its considerable contribution to the achievement of major socio- economic objectives in the developing countries, it is hoped that this book will contribute to generating awareness among researchers, manufacturers, policy makers and others who are interested in the well-being of the many less privileged people in the world.

Asiedu, J.J.: "Processing and Physical/Chemical Properties of Tropical Products". Centaurus-Ver'gspesellschaft, Pfaffenweiler, 1986. 398 pages. English.
ISBN 3-89085-132-0

The book, of which the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zuzammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH is co-publisher, was subsidized by the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation.

Fibre Concrete Roofing

This assessment is the result of an evaluation of fibre concrete roofing FCR) technology which was undertaken by a working group from SKAT, ITDG, GATE, ATI, DEH and individuals concerned with the transfer of this technology.

The roof is the main element and :he most expensive part of low-cost houses. Alternative roofing materials have become more and more interesting in recent years, as the global demand for cheap solutions has increased and conventional materials such as burnt clay tiles become scarcer and scarcer (lack of firewood, timber etc.).

FCR is a roofing material made from cement, sand and natural fibres such as sisal, coir etc. The technology allows production by small units of four workers. The roofing elements are shaped and sized in the form of either tiles or sheets. The technology has spread very fast all over the world and many private development organizations (NGOs) have initiated local production in the last few years. About 200 units are currently producing in several countries.

When this study was started in 1985, FCR roofing sheets had been used successfully in some places and harshly criticized in others. Many people and organizations had to face bad and sometimes disastrous results. In some cases up to 95 per cent of the sheets were leaking and had to be replaced. FCR thus got a rather bad image despite some successes in other cases and many potential users were hesitant about using FCR in their projects. In view of this situation it became necessary to study the problems carefully and to assess experience to date. The authors of this report are leading experts in the production and application of FCR and present here a thorough study of the state of the art.

With this report a consensus has been reached regarding the possibilities and limitations of FCR. The general conclusion is that FCR is a promising technology provided the know-how is adequately and comprehensively communicated to all producers and users, and provided this information is followed up with the help of a worldwide network of regional centres specializing in FCR.

The report is an assessment of the state of the art and not a manual for FCR production and application.

"Fibre concrete roofing - an assessment of a promising technology". 1987. 170 pages, many photographs and illustrations. English (Spanish and French summaries included). A SKAT-ITDG co-publication. Sfr. 25.00. ISBN 3-908001-05-6.

Development and Dependence

This is the title of a book which, according to the authors, is intended as an introduction to development policy. Development theories, the world food situation, education, appropriate technology, armament, international development cooperation, and the question of new development strategies are just a few of the points covered in the 160-page book. It is written in language which even raw beginners can understand, complemented by illustrations. Each chapter concludes with a list of references, so that interested readers can find out more about the topic in question.

Frank Bliss, Eckehart Ehrenberg, Ernst A. Schmied: "Entwicklung und Abhangigheit" (Development and Dependence). 1985, 160pp., DM 9.80. Publ. by Politischer Arbeitskreis Schulen (PAS). ISBN 3-92187605-2. The book is only available in German.