When everyone has access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food at all times, there’s food security. However, a food-secure world is still yet to be achieved, with around 828 million people worldwide presently affected by hunger.
Food security is at the heart of the second sustainable goal of the United Nations (UN), aiming to eradicate world hunger. This goal requires better access to food, which entails improving the productivity and incomes of smallholder farmers, the backbone of food production, through equal opportunities, sustainable systems, and resilient practices.
To achieve food security, preventing food losses is vital to provide sufficient food for everyone. Especially during the post-harvest stage wherein, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the world experiences an average of 14% food loss with a value of around $400 billion. Reducing these post-harvest losses offers benefits as it significantly improves food access and gives farmers more opportunities for better income and a healthier ecosystem for sustainable food production.
An Innovative Post-Harvest Solution
During post-harvest, food commodity undergoes multiple processes before further processing towards retail and consumption. Storage and transport are among the critical post-harvest processes, during which losses often happen due to poor management and environmental factors. Fortunately, innovative solutions are readily available to address issues that lead to damage and loss.
Hermetic technology is one such valuable and reliable innovation. This technology has existed since the Neolithic era when airtight underground pits were used for food storage. The same concept is still applied today in utilizing airtight properties to create a modified atmosphere that restricts air and moisture flow.
The modified atmosphere of hermetic technology provides a safe and stable environment to preserve commodities during long-term storage. This environment effectively and naturally controls infestations, molds, and the effects of external changes, including erratic weather and climate. This innovative technology is presently used beyond storage and provides the same protection during long-distance transport in the form of hermetic container liners.
Impact on Food Security
With historical relevance and modern-day usage, the reliability of hermetic technology has always been consistent. However, this asks the question: how significant is its impact on achieving food security?
In one study held throughout Mexico, various storage technologies underwent an evaluation based on the effectiveness of preserving maize against insect infestations and climatic factors. The percentage of insect damage in common practices was up to 39.4%, compared to hermetic technologies’ low average of up to 3.8%. Hermetic storage units, including the now Hermetic Bag Farm™ (formerly SuperGrainbag™ Farm), also minimized losses regardless of storage conditions compared to non-hermetic technologies, which failed in tropical conditions.
Set in Mozambique, another experiment aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of hermetic containers in storing paddy rice. With traditional bags, the percentage of damaged grain and weight loss reached a maximum of 6.98% and 5.56%, respectively. On the other hand, the recorded maximum for hermetic storage, like the GrainSafe Bag™, has only reached 3.24% grain damage and 1.62% weight loss. These results concluded that hermetic storage is a viable option for the safe long-term storage of paddy rice.
GrainPro, the leading global company of post-harvest innovations and hermetic solutions, aims to achieve food security by sustainably lessening food losses. The post-harvest solutions of GrainPro have mitigated approximately 98.86% of losses from traditional practices, securing a lifetime total of 158 million kilograms of agricultural commodities worth more than 124 million USD.
Currently, GrainPro has served more than 1.4 million farmers, benefitting millions of people worldwide. Working with consistency and drive to deliver better innovations, these numbers can significantly and continually improve along with food security.
With its safe preservation of commodities and prevention of losses, hermetic technology is a valuable solution in the journey to food security. While lessening food losses is a crucial first step, achieving food security still requires consistency and collaboration.
Learn more about GrainPro’s superior post-harvest innovations and hermetic solutions by clicking the link below.
Date Published: February 26, 2024