Farmers can shell over 30 times more groundnuts per person per day using a manual decordicator machine from the Agricultural Technology Development Centre (ATDC), Mtwapa, Kilifi County.
The machine can shell 60 kilogrammes of groundnuts per hour. It is approximated that one person can shell between one and three quarters to two kilos per hour by free hand.
Kea Bakari, an ATDC official based at the Coast institution, said the machine saves farmers more man-hours spent in removing the shells from groundnuts by free hand.
“It is a cost effective and cheap to maintain machine because no fuel is required to run it. It eases the work for farmers, therefore, helping them avoid losses resulting from the seeds rotting in bad weather,” he said.
Despite the speed, the machine does not cause breakage of the seeds. Its teeth are spaced in such a way that they only remove the outer ‘coat’ allowing for the seeds to move to the collecting chamber below.
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Whole seeds are of high quality, therefore, fetch more income for the farmers. At the same time, crashed seeds are prone to humidity, which reduces their shelf life besides exposing them to attacks such as aflatoxins.
Aflatoxins are poisonous fungi that attack foods, especially seeds and cereals.
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The machine costs Sh9,000.
PHOTO: Indian women learning how a groundnuts decordicator works. Kenya’s ATDC is selling a manual decordicator machine that can shell 60kg of groundnuts per hour. PHOTO BY www.premagnetos.com
For more inquiries, centre can be reached on +254722764503 or any nearest Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation.