ISLAMABAD,(Pakistan Point News - 20th july,2016): Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) has built capacity in date growers to use solar technology for drying of dates by developing a Solar-cum-Gas Fired Date Dryer for the dehydration of dates. This system can reduce post-harvest losses and improve quality of dates, according to a statement received here on Wednesday. Five solar drying systems have been installed in Khairpur and Sukkur Region of Sindh Province at Pano Aquil, Pryalo, Pir Jo goth, Therhi and Hayyat Solangi in date production areas of Sindh.
At these sites PARC also conducted training for local farmers to use and maintenance of these systems to get benefit from this technology to increase their production as well as to produce quality dates. The farmers' capacity building programme would help to increase capability and understanding of the farmers to equip themselves with proper drying techniques of dates for upcoming seasons. The farmers can also use this system to dry other fruits.
Through the use of this technology, farmers can improve their production and enhance income by producing quality dates and other fruits. This system would also be an addition in the system to meet the national goal of food security in the country. These activities are being conducted under SAARC development funded project titled "Postharvest Management and Value Addition of Fruits in Production Catchments in SAARC Countries-Pakistan Component of Agricultural Engineering Division (AED) of PARC with the assistance of AZRI Technology Field Station located in Khairpur (Sindh).
A team of scientists led by Dr. Munir Ahmad, Chief Scientist and Director General (AED) PARC and other members include Dr. Muhammad Abbas Bhutto, Senior Scientific Officer and Incharge AZRI Technology Field Station-Khairpur, Furrukh Ehsan, SO, Asif Anwar and Sheraz Ahmad Anjum is actively working for the transfer of this knowledge and technology among the farmers and date growers in the country.