Specialists from the SA Trade Hub, in conjunction with local partner INVC, trained over 200 farmers in Aflatoxin management in the Dedza District of Malawi. The field-based training targeted farmer leaders who will now be able to serve as farmer trainers in best practices in Aflatoxin mitigation and management for the roughly 10,000 smallholder farmers in Dedza.
The skills and knowledge developed included preventative and migratory skills in Aflatoxin management for groundnuts and other cereals prone to Aflatoxin contamination. These skills will help farmers and traders to improve the safety and nutritional value of the food they consume at home and the groundnuts they bring to the market.
The farmers trained were affiliated with the INVC program and its partners including NASFAM and CADECOM. The technology and techniques imparted to the farmers were developed by the USAID Peanut Collaborative Research Support Program (Peanut-CRSP). The technology involves the mild heat treatment of raw peanuts, removal of the skins, and the manual removal of Aflatoxin-contaminated peanuts based on color sorting. Trainees are now able to detect damaged and discolored kernels in order to separate them from undamaged/non-discolored groundnuts. The result is kernels with Aflatoxin concentrations well below the stringent regulatory limits for export markets.
Photo: Groundnut quality control sorters at Afri-nut in Lilongwe, Malawi