Once they have invested in suitable equipment, processing enables smallholders to increase their incomes, since they can demand a high price for the value-added processed products.
Main process of cassava flour production line
Introduction of cassava flour production line
Cassava roots contain cyanide, which is poisonous. Different varieties of cassava contain different amounts of cyanide.Roots that contain more amounts of cyanide normally taste bitter and should not be eaten raw, while the roots of “sweet” varieties contain low level of cyanide and can be eaten raw.
Cassava roots can be processed into different products, which includes garri, flour, bread and starch. Processing provides smallholder cassava producers with additional market opportunities, beyond simple selling the fresh roots.Once they have invested in suitable equipment, processing enables smallholders to increase their incomes, since they can demand a high price for the value-added processed products.
Traditional methods of processing cassava roots can result in poor qualities products that contain unacceptable levels of cyanide, as well as being contaminated by foreign matter and disease-causing agents. If people eat these kind of products, they can suffer from acute cyanide poisoning, goiter and a nerve-demaging disorder that makes them unsteady and unable to walk properly.
Proper processing converts fresh cassava roots into safer and more marketable products by:
1. Reducing cyanide level in the processed products.
2. Prolonging shelf life.
3. Reducing post-harvest losses of fresh cassava roots.
4. Avoiding contaminated of the products and environment
Floor design for a smallholder cassava processing factory
This floor plan illustrates a possible layout for a smallholder cassava processing factory. It can be modified according to the needs of the business:
1. The size can be larger or smaller.
2. Different cassava processing pathways can be adapted into a single system, enabling the processor to process a wide range of cassava products.
3. Changing rooms for workers can be located inside or outside the main building, but toilets should be separate.
4. The water source or well should be outside the main building.
5. The store should not be too large and only the processed cassava products should be stored there to minimise the risk of contamination.
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