Vegetable Drying Machine Put to Test

Green Field Garden members were fascinated by the new vegetable drying machine which was acquired by Zimbabwe Development Democracy Trust (ZDDT) from Lance Edwards.

The machine has proved to be extremely efficient; it dries up vegetables within a space of five hours, a process that usually takes days.

In a recent interview, the chairperson of the garden, Mrs Sazini Mthinsi, said they were given a tutorial by the ZDDT horticulture consultant, Yvonne Berkhout, on how to operate the machine.

"Firstly, you make a fire on the machines fire place and then you place the vegetables on top of the trays then you leave them to dry. In the process you have to keep throwing in small sticks in the fireplace so as to keep the fire burning. Last week I showed the other garden members how to use the machine and we dried chomolia. This machine is very useful, especially during this rainy season. It would be a great idea if every garden could get one for its members and start selling dried vegetables as they will have a faster way of drying them," said Mrs Mthinsi.

By drying vegetables, it enables the buyer to store the produce indefinitely and, in turn, the producer can add value in times of poor prices.

Through its community outreach programme, ZDDT promotes innovation and technological development to increase production and improve income levels of the poor.