- About Us
- Digital Learning
Perishables such as fruit and vegetables require supply chains that reliably deliver fresh products to consumers. After harvest, long-term preservation of perishable products is difficult. Fruit and vegetables need to be sold quickly to avoid food loss and waste. For example, leafy vegetables change color quickly. Even though they are still edible, their price drops, causing retailers to lose profits. Reducing such food losses is one of the UN SDG Goal 12 targets, i.e., SDG 12.3, which states, “By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including postharvest losses.”
Preservation of quality contributes not only to the stable supply of perishables to consumers but also to increasing farmers’ income. To maintain the quality of fruit and vegetables, careful handling at harvest and proper environmental control postharvest are necessary. Cold chain systems are therefore indispensable for perishable supply chains.
Marketing of perishable products, however, is difficult for small farmers because they are usually located far from consumers and establishing cold chains is costly. Consequently, they often organize agricultural cooperatives and combine harvest sales. Another strategy is leveraging now readily available digital platforms. ICT facilitates connections between small farmers and consumers, and some small farmers sell products directly to consumers in urban areas through internet sites. In Japan, sales of perishable products between small farmers and agribusinesses are combined by ICT in some regions, which reduces their costs as well as maintains their freshness.
This workshop will discuss recent trends in innovative technologies for perishable supply chains, focusing on benefits to small farmers, who are the majority in APO members. In countries of East Asia and the Pacific (excluding the People’s Republic of China) and South Asia, about 70-80% of farms are smaller than 2 ha (UN Food and Agriculture Organization, 2015). This workshop will also promote the goal of contributing to innovation capacity under the APO Vision 2025.
For more details please click on PN.