Re­searchers list economic uses of cas­sava peels

The Guardian (Nigeria) - - AGRO ECONOMY - By Ay­o­mide Ag­baje

WITH in­no­va­tions and tech­nolo­gies, cas­sava peels have moved from be­ing an en­vi­ron­men­tal nui­sance to im­por­tant economic ma­te­ri­als used in an­i­mal feeds and mush­room pro­duc­tion, among oth­ers. Re­search has re­vealed that the peel con­sti­tutes 20.1% of the tu­bers, im­ply­ing that about 4.2 met­ric tonnes of cas­sava peels per hectare are avail­able an­nu­ally for feed­ing ru­mi­nants such as goats, pigs, and poul­try. Pro­fes­sor Ko­la­wole Ade­bayo, a lec­turer at the Fed­eral Univer­sity of Agri­cul­ture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), said, “Cas­sava peel is es­sen­tially fiber that con­tains a lit­tle starch from over-peel­ing by the ru­ral farm­ers. One of the first ar­eas we look at when we talk about economic im­por­tance of cassa- va peels is feed­ing the ru­mi­nants and live­stock, par­tic­u­larly the peels that are in wet form which will be fer­mented a bit and then used as feeds to pigs.”

An­other way to make use of cas­sava peels, ac­cord­ing to Ade­bayo, is “when we make it a layer to grow mush­rooms on. And mush­rooms are high in fiber and pro­tein, which are very nu­tri­tious. All of these are the pri­mary im­por­tance of cas­sava peels.”

Ade­bayo added that cas­sava peels are said to be part of the in­gre­di­ents in soap mak­ing if burnt, but he has not per­son­ally done it to con­firm how ef­fec­tive it is, but he is sure it is the­o­ret­i­cally pos­si­ble.

He said: “Some of my col­leagues have also added value to cas­sava peels by grat­ing and putting it in other live­stock feeds. But I con­sider it to be very ex­pen­sive al­ter­na­tive.

“If you are con­ver­sant with the cas­sava-grow­ing en­vi­ron­ment, you will note that about 10% of cas­sava is solid waste and this can be a nui­sance if not prop­erly man­aged. Over the years, I have done some groups of work with the World Bank to see how we can com­mer­cially con­vert this to prod­ucts to yield in­come, es­pe­cially for the poor.”

Sim­i­larly, ac­cord­ing to a re­search led by Iheana­cho Okike, a sci­en­tist with In­ter­na­tional Live­stock Re­search In­sti­tute (ILRI) in Ibadan, “the new process and in­no­va­tion could also re­lease about two million tonnes of maize for hu­man con­sump­tion that would oth­er­wise have been used for an­i­mal feeds, con­tribut­ing sig­nif­i­cantly to food se­cu­rity ef­forts in the coun­try.”

There are sev­eral ex­ist­ing tech­nolo­gies of dry­ing, grat­ing and pre­serv­ing cas­sava peels which would hold the key to pro­vid­ing a read­ily avail­able and sus­tain­able source of feed­ing for do­mes­tic an­i­mals, which will in­crease in­come for farm­ers.

The use of cas­sava peels as a par­tial re­place­ment of maize in young pigs’ diet was shown, ac­cord­ing to re­search, to be cost-ef­fec­tive. It was also es­tab­lished in the re­search study that up to a 57% level of in­clu­sion had no dele­te­ri­ous and harm­ful ef­fects on the pigs.

Mrs Bola Adeyemo, a fe­male farmer in Oyo State, tes­ti­fied also that the economic value of pro­cess­ing cas­sava peels is very high even though the equip­ment used in pro­cess­ing the cas­sava peels are very ex­pen­sive

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.