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Efforts underway to identify root causes of food losses in Sri Lanka

6 October 2022 07:12 am - 7     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


  • Backed by Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research 
  • Collaborating for research will be IPS, Peradeniya and Wayamba Universities and Open University of Sri Lanka
  • Ground investigation shows lack of quality and food safety awareness across fresh fruit and vegetable value chains

Efforts are underway to identify the root causes of food losses in Sri Lanka, with the support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIRA), so that the local authorities are able to address the issue and create a new economic value chain.  

Joining hands to help design and demonstrate affordable technologies and organisational options to mitigate these losses are also the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) and the Agricultural Sector of the National Planning Department.

The key partners of the project also include the University of Peradeniya, University of Wayamba and Open University of Sri Lanka.  

A similar effort will also take place for Pakistan under the project. 

At a briefing held in Colombo yesterday, the stakeholders of the project pointed out that the ground observations and investigations point to a lack of quality and food safety awareness across the fresh fruit and vegetable value chains. 

The poor knowledge in this regard hinders the achievement of inclusive growth, food security and national goals, they pointed out. 

The project, over the next three years, aims to make practice change attractive across primary production to processing and retail stages by demonstrating opportunities to reduce costs, increase market value and improve business competitiveness. 

ACIRA Canberra Programme Manager Agribusiness Howard Hall shared that while progress toward modern food systems in both Pakistan and Sri Lanka are improving, the gap between the desired change and current practices remains large. 

Bridging the gap requires working more closely with chain partners, prioritising ways to remove barriers and making practice change worthwhile. 

“Extending such an approach can help farmers gain more stable incomes, adapt to change, including that of climate, increase investment in modern value chains and improve food quality and diversity for consumers.

The ensuring reduction in waste and food loss will improve the environment and decrease the cost for stakeholders,” Hall told the project inception workshop held yesterday.  The agri project that will be rolled out will specifically focus on the tomato and mango value chain to identify key value chain practices that contribute to food loss and value depletion.

It will also explore the emerging trends and contextual factors in the operating environment of these chains, including climate change and COVID-19 implications. The main accomplishment of the project will be its hands-on approach to improved business practices and recommendations that will lead to the continued adoption of improved business strategies and commercial arrangements to achieve food loss abatement. 

  Comments - 7

  • TS Thursday, 06 October 2022 07:40 AM

    Gentleman, don't waste money in researching the root cause of food losses. Don't waste your time with our University Academics. They are one of the root causes. If you don't know, I will explain to you the root cause in few sentences:- In 2019, people elected a President called Gotabaya Rajapaksa. He had no prior experience in this job. So he took the wrong advice from wrong people and suddenly banned chemical fertilizer and pesticides. He converted the agriculture policy to organic over night. So, hope now you can understand the root cause. The money you have set aside to find root cause of food losses can be sent directly to buy food for the people who are starving due to the above root cause. Thank you

    Sokrates Thursday, 06 October 2022 07:49 AM

    How is a parliament and a government whose members have the IQ of a louse to understand something like that?

    Ruvin Thursday, 06 October 2022 08:43 AM

    Machang, you may be born recently. All the others know the reason. We had an idiot who stopped bringing in fertilizer and then he ran away. The root cause is we elected an idiot.

    Terrence Thursday, 06 October 2022 09:06 AM

    Basically the ordinary farmers and the specialized professionals had the answer to the question of food losses and it was our Jack of All Trades and his stooges and politician having so called 7 Brains ran amok that brought this crisis

    joshua Thursday, 06 October 2022 09:36 AM

    Food issues were brought about by blind policies of the former President and his stooge Mahindananda

    Coo Mawatha Thursday, 06 October 2022 09:46 AM

    Hey Howard Hall, can you hurry up with your investigation and a conclusions to save food? Wimalaweera Dissanayake and Namal Rajapakse, two of our most promising leaders are "suffering from malnutrition", so they claim. Can you sort this swiftly so that we get food to them before the two die of starvation.

    This is a fools paradise Thursday, 06 October 2022 11:25 AM

    Even a small child will tell you the root cause for for the food crisis situation in the country. But don't speak to the govt pundits...and also the relegios leaders as they are the root cause for this.

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