USAID's Southern Africa Trade Hub partnered with Strategic Partnership grantee Solidaridad to deliver a four-day training in Chimoio, Mozambique to groundnut farmers at various levels of the value chain. Solidaridad received a grant of US$65,000 in 2014 to improve soil fertility in their maize and cotton fields via crop rotation with soy and groundnut.
Forty-five participants (including 18 women) attended the training, which covered causes, detection, and prevention of the carcinogenic mold aflatoxin in groundnuts. It also provided a crash course in the economic benefits of ensuring groundnut crops meet acceptable aflatoxin levels. The second half of the training demonstrated proper methods to sort and detect aflatoxin-infected groundnuts using simple and practical tools available at the household level.
The training was attended by processors and farmers, many of whom did not have previous knowledge about aflatoxin. “I did not know anything about aflatoxin before I came for this training,” said Chonko Vazungwa. “I always thought aflatoxin was witchcraft because my harvest and farm animals were getting affected and I did not know what it was.”
For the demonstrations, the Trade Hub bought groundnuts from local markets and retailers to demonstrate how badly the nuts were affected by aflatoxin.