Bhartiya Krishi Anusandhan Patrika, volume 39 issue 1 (march 2024) : 74-80

Characterization of Post-harvest Losses along the Supply Chain of Vegetables in Punjab

Jashleen Kaur Sidhu1,*, Lopamudra Mohapatra1, Davinder Singh1
1Department of Extension Education, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana-141 001, Punjab, India.
  • Submitted23-01-2024|

  • Accepted29-03-2024|

  • First Online 11-04-2024|

  • doi 10.18805/BKAP706

Cite article:- Sidhu Kaur Jashleen, Mohapatra Lopamudra, Singh Davinder (2024). Characterization of Post-harvest Losses along the Supply Chain of Vegetables in Punjab . Bhartiya Krishi Anusandhan Patrika. 39(1): 74-80. doi: 10.18805/BKAP706.

Background: The loss of vegetables is immense which is accrued to its perishability and sub optimal level of post-harvest management. There is a technological gap in adoption of harvesting and post-harvesting practices by farmers. There is sparse qualitative and quantitative assessment of post-harvest losses of vegetables in Punjab. The objective of the study is to identify the operation and channel where the losses are crossing the threshold, to estimate the extent of losses and characterize them at various post-harvest operations and levels for selected vegetables in Punjab and to analyse the factors responsible for post-harvest losses.

Methods: The sample in survey location consisted of all the stakeholders of supply chain network for vegetables in the state of Punjab, India. The stakeholders consisted of farmers, wholesalers and retailers. The study adopted cluster sampling technique. The clusters selected for the study were Nakodar, Malerkotla and Baba Bakala Sahib and the vegetables selected for the study were potato, pea, tomato, okra and cauliflower. Further snowball sampling technique was used to select 80 farmers from each cluster, making up a total sample of 240 farmers and one reference each for wholesaler and retailer was identified in every cluster. Then using snowball technique, 2 wholesalers and 10 retailers were selected from each cluster. Thus, making total sample of 10 wholesalers and 30 retailers were selected for the study. The instrument used for the data collection was a structured interview schedule. The one-way ANOVA and Tukey’s Honest Significant Difference test were employed to understand the significant difference in post-harvest losses between the selected vegetables and along the supply chain.

Result: The results revealed that the maximum losses were observed in tomato crop at farm level (17.71%) and retailer level (30.10%) whereas at wholesaler level maximum losses were recorded in pea (8.19%). The extent of losses at farm level has been higher as compared to wholesaler level and it was highest at the retailer level. At farmer’s level it was observed that there have been significantly higher losses in tomato crop (17.7±13.35). At retailer level, significantly higher losses were observed in tomato (30.10±15.80) whereas at wholesaler level, significantly higher losses occurred in pea (12.29±3.15). There was no significant difference in losses between farmer and retailer level. Major cause of loss reported by tomato growers (88.6%) was infestation of fruits with disease and insect. Main reason of post-harvest losses in okra and cauliflower as stated by farmers were bruises/blackening and over maturity. Since the findings reveal that the major losses in the supply chain of vegetables was due to lack adoption of harvest and post-harvest practices at farmer’s level. It is suggested that field level training should be imparted to farmers regarding post-harvest management techniques.

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