No Stones, No Grit! A game-changing technology to process small grain introduced in Zimbabwe

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In Zimbabwe, the traditional, laborious, and time-consuming small grain processing may soon belong to the past, thanks to a game-changing technology: a multi-crop thresher. This scale-appropriate machine offers a smarter and less strenuous way to produce high-quality small-grain meals, including in drought-prone regions, without being contaminated with sand or stone particles.

“One of the main impediments to large-scale adoption of sorghum and millet in drought-prone areas is the laborious task of threshing. This has been solved by introducing multi-crop threshers, which form a central part in the business of mechanization service providers in rural Zimbabwe”, says Christian Thierfelder, principal scientist and project lead for the Mechanization and Extension Activity.

The introduction of the multi-crop thresher not only alleviates the physical strain of manual threshing but also enhances the overall quality of small-grain products. This innovation is a crucial step forward in promoting the production and consumption of small grains in Zimbabwe, contributing to food security and improved livelihoods for farmers.

This innovation was introduced by the Feed the Future Mechanization and Extension Activity, implemented by CIMMYT and funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), to address the challenges of traditional small grain processing and offer new market opportunities to farmers.

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