Post-harvest management

Post-harvest management 2

Grading

To get a better price for your potatoes, start to grade them by size. Put them into small, medium and large piles (instead of piling them all together with small at the bottom and big at the top) and market them to different buyers.

Potato piles

Small potatoes can be used for seeds on the farm, medium for small buyers at a cheaper prices and large potatoes to big buyers at a premium price.

Storage

Storage of potatoes is also key to getting a bumper harvest. Storing your potatoes has a lot of good benefits.

Not only can you stop losing an amount of your harvest every year to disease, you can also hold them until a time when the markets are better.

Form a group with your neighbours to sell to large potato buyers. It is easier to sell 1000 bags than 100 bags. You will get a bigger profit.

Store potatoes in a Charcoal store

Charcoal cooler

A good way to store your potatoes is using a charcoal cooler store.

Build a big charcoal store with your neighbours. Store your potato crop for up to 3-4 months.

The open walls are made of mesh wire packed with charcoal.

The charcoal is always kept wet by water from a tank. Water evaporates from the charcoal which takes heat from inside the store. The store is therefore kept very cold. It is also dark – perfect for potatoes!

Make sure the bags do not touch the walls.

potatoes in charcoal store

Benefits of charcoal store

  • No electricity needed, just water.
  • Can be used to store many different fruits and vegetables.
  • They stop fruits and vegetables from drying out.
  • Easy to build.
  • If many farmers join together to build the store, it is not expensive.
  • Cheap to maintain.