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Post-harvest Losses, Zero energy cooling technologies, Fruits and vegetables, Horticultural crops, Content analysis, Semi-systematic review approach, Tanzania
Tanzanian Fruits and Vegetables (F&V) industry employs more than 4.5 million people whose 70% are women and grew at 11% annually in the last decade. Despite the vital role played by F&V industry, the sub-sector experiences huge Post-Harvest Losses (PHL) accounting for up to 60% of the total produce. These losses threaten sustainability of the production, enlarge Food & nutrition insecurity concerns, deprive economic use of the produced crops, increase prices of crops and reduce amounts of consumer expenditure to reach farmers. This paper employed semi-systematic approach and content analysis to unveil potentials of using Zero Energy technologies to lessen PHL in Tanzania’s F&V industry. Search queries namely; ‘postharvest losses (PHL) management, Tanzania Fruits and Vegetables and Zero Energy technologies’ were used to solicit literature from reliable bibliographic databases including Google scholar, JUSTOR and Science Direct. Results showed that a number of practices and technologies to handle F&V including manual harvesting, non-refrigerated transport modes; and traditional storage facilities such as bamboo baskets, plant leaves % open spaces under the shade. Deploying usage of ZECC to address PHL of F&V would lower food losses amounted to 2,093,583tons of fruits and 587,569 tons of vegetables per annum whose value amounts to 4.6 trillion and 1.4 trillion Tanzanian shillings respectively. The value of PHL for both fruits and vegetables (six trillion) were enough to pay annual public servants’ salaries or the government annual debt by 87% in 2021/2022. Moreover, the spreading effect would enhance food and nutrition security, improve affordability of F&V to consumers and raise farmers’ income. Indeed, reduction of PHL in the F&V industry will lead to economic empowerment of women involved in the F&V sub sector.