Nepal, a land-locked country in south Asia, has an area of 147,181 square kilometers. Nepal is a peculiar country because of its diversity. It has diversity in topography, cultures, traditions, languages, climates, etc. Its altitude ranges from 60m to 8848m above sea level. Differences in climate, weather and temperature can be felt on every rise or fall in altitude of about 200m above sea level.
Agriculture has been the major stay for Nepalese people, as about 65% people are found to be involved in agriculture occupation contributing 31.7% GDP in national economic.
Introduction and Discussion
Talking about Nepal, It is a very practicable to think about agriculture. Its land topography, variation in weather and climate and historical background creates opportunities to invest in agriculture sector. Nepalese people’s lifestyle and adapting potential unlocks the scope about agriculture here. They have come a long way in terms of adapting technologies, sustainability and commercialization in agriculture. There are still few portion of population those haven’t adapted advancing technologies.
If we have to pick one from the major problems in agriculture sector, then that will be Post Harvest Loss (PHL). Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of U.N. (2010) predicts that about 1.3 billion tons of food are globally wasted or lost per year. According to FAOSTAT Nepal, number of severely food insecure people is increased from 2.6 million to 2.9 million between 2016 to 2019 (FAOSTAT). Around 30 to 40 percent of perishable crops are lost due to lack of storage facility in Nepal. Out of which about half of the loss is due to lack of proper storage technique.
Most of the farmers of Nepal are still using traditional storage methods, which are inefficient to check the post harvest loss. Since the market accessibility has also been the major problem, PHL loss is significantly effected by the storage practices followed by the majority of Nepalese people. There is no cold storage in most of the areas, for the countryside people, advance technologies are still far from imagination. Also rural farmers don’t have sophisticated transportation system and they have either to store in their indigenous storage system or transport them. In both way, there is loss in plenty.
Here are some of the techniques, farmers are using from ancient times.
- Muja-ko Bhakari
- Kath ko Bhakari
- Choya ko Bhakari
- Dehari and Kothi
- Suli out-door raised platform with proper roofing for maize storage
- Gagro and Ghyampo
- Dalo/ Bamboo basket
Above are the few traditional techniques used for storage.
Due to the modernization, Cold storage has been found to be installed in few major areas. Though the number modern storage methods are in less number and need attention from the local farmer and government to control PHL. Checking PHL will ultimately ensure food security and also reduction in importing of food materials from foreign countries. Considering the population growth rate, just reducing the PHL by taking some action in improving storage methods can boost the food security.
- FAOSTAT Nepal
- FAO of UN 2010
- Indigenous methods of grain storage followed by the Lepcha and Limbo tribes in the Himalayan tract of Sikkim
- Country presentation-Farm level grain storage pest management in Nepal
- Images from google: https://images.app.goo.gl/3EQa8w1etimxJRR18
- Images from google: https://images.app.goo.gl/cy7CAjms6mPGAEgs9