In Sub-Saharan Africa and in particular Uganda, smallholder farmer experience high quantitative and qualitative losses in maize due to practicing poor post-harvest handling practices. The study explored farmer’ practices and their implication on postharvest losses among smallholder farmers in Uganda using the case of Kakumiro district in Western Uganda. An exploratory study involving four focus group interviews complemented by 136 semi-structured interviews were conducted to gain information from maize farmers. While thematic-content analysis was applied to the qualitative data, quantitative data were analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 18.0. Exploratory results indicate that postharvest losses occur mainly during harvesting, shelling, drying and storage. The findings imply that if the Post Harvest Losses (PHLs) are not mitigated at these crucial stages in the value chain, households are likely to remain food and income insecure. Therefore, any future interventions should target mitigating PHLs in maize that occur at these critical and interdependent stages. To achieve this calls for concerted efforts in using more robust and integrated methods and approaches such as Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) that are re-known for changing mindset and fostering interactive learning among farmers about postharvest management.
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RUFORUM Working document series