The article “Reducing Crop Waste Through Better Infection Prevention” was specially written for Safety Net by Alice Palmer
Food and crop waste affect not only the farmers and agriculture workers who grow them but also ordinary consumers. Findings from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN estimate the global volume of food wastage at 1.6 billion tons. The edible part of this wastage amounts to 1.3 billion tons. This tells us that not only is a lot of food and agriculture going to waste but it could also still be consumed by many in nutrient-poor areas. Reducing crop waste is therefore a priority for the betterment of society.
One major cause of food and crop waste — along with global food insecurity — is pathogens that cause plant infections. Today, we’ll look at how these pathogens contribute to the production of crop waste and how infection prevention can help reduce the problem:
Plant Pathogens & Food Waste
Plant pathogens and fungi infections are best represented in the molds we see in rotten or spoiled foods. Any fungi and fungal-like organisms found in plants are plant pathogens, making all plants vulnerable to plant diseases. Insights from the Finding Genius, a podcast series on Scribd, highlight how these pathogens dramatically change a plant’s ability to survive. Unfortunately, in the context of farming, fungal infections and pathogens can lead to many agricultural issues, which is why we need to control them. To manage these fungal pathogens, researchers look into the interactions between plants and fungi and what scientific process can help defend crops against the fungi.
How does food waste — caused by these pathogens — affect food security and safety for consumers worldwide, then? In a One Health Outlook study, researchers cite the case of rotting banana fruit in Uganda, and how the wilting and death of banana plants result in significant reductions in the availability of this staple food in East and Central Africa. The study also emphasizes the threats of poor plant health on population health, productivity, and prosperity. Protecting plants from pathogens and pests will not only improve global food security and safety but also confront the impacts of climate change while protecting the environment.
Infection Prevention Planning Services & How They Can Help
To help protect crops and plants against pathogens and subsequently reduce crop waste, infection control and prevention solutions should prioritize the safety and health of the workers handling produce, as well as that of the consumers who will eventually access them. In the agricultural context, chemicals such as those found in pesticides, fungicides, and insecticides can create long-term health issues for the farmers that use them, along with potential health implications for consumers.
As a safer and effective alternative, patented residual antimicrobial solution Biotrexx 247 eliminates the threat of molds, mildew, fungi, and dangerous bacteria from affecting your crops. When growing organic food and produce, solutions like Biotrexx 247 can help fend off a wide range of microbial growth from affecting the plants, significantly reducing the amount of food and crop waste produced per annum. Protecting the plants and crops at the growth stage will benefit end-consumers in terms of food quantity and quality while minimizing their exposure to harmful chemicals. This strategy is sustainable and safer for the environment as well. On top of protecting plants from plant diseases, solutions such as the Biotrexx 247 are a way to protect plants from other potentially harmful microorganisms without disrupting nature.
Aside from outdoor farming setups, infection prevention solutions will serve the same purpose for indoor use. This is especially useful for businesses that own year-long production facilities which produce natural and organic products, as indoor grow houses are just as susceptible to mold, mildew, and fungi as other microbial threats.
For more updates on infection control & prevention do check out The Safety Blog. Safety Net’s Enhanced Bio-Security Program is designed to protect farmers and distributors from harvest loss and ensure a better bottom line.