PROCESSING OF MANGO NECTAR FOR ADOPTION BY SMALL AND MEDIUM SCALE ENTERPRISES IN SUB SAHARAN AFRICA

Abstract

Mango is one of the most cultivated and consumed fruits in the world and in Sub- Saharan Africa. However, the seasonality of the fruit production, and  its high perishability poses a great problem to the Kenyan population since many small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) have not fully exploited the potential  benefits to be incurred in this lucrative business. Numerous technologies have been designed to solve the ever growing overproduction and poor postharvest handling of  mangoes that either goes bad due to poor road infrastructure, poor marketing, or just sheer ignorance and negligence. This project was designed to use a technological aspect learnt in Food Science to help in the preservation of the fruit. The technology if adopted by the youth and other smaller and medium enterprises will lead to self reliance, and solve the ever growing unemployment of the younger populations. Nutritionally, mango nectar is a very good source of vitamin C and is easily digestible by all ages of a population. Since this kind of business requires very little capital input, which has been a major hinderance forcommercial production of such products, it is envisioned that the technology of processing mango nectar when adopted by the youth will go a long way in promoting development and the realization of the millennium development goals and also the Kenyan Vision 2030. This project used good quality ripe mangoes, lemons (2 spoons per kg of pulp), sugar (200g/kg of pulp) and boiled water (1 litre/kg of pulp) as key raw materials for production of the nectar. The ingredients for manufacture of nectarare easily available, cheap and require little maintenance. The mangoes were sorted and washed in clean water with a food grade detergent, the peeled with stainless knives. The stone was removed while cutting mangoes into smaller pieces. Juice from the fruit was extracted using a manual extractor. Boiled water, sugar and lemon juice were then added. The final mixture was adjusted to contain 12% solids and a pH of 3.5-3.8. Citric acid may be used to adjust acidity instead of lemon juice. A manual mixer was used to homogenize the juice to a smooth uniform texture and the juice was filled in bottles and pasteurised in boiling water for 30 minutes. This wass followed by cooling and packing in crates ready for sale. In conclusion, the adoption of this process in sub Saharan Africa will aid the youth in generation of a modest income, and will also help in reducing the rate of crime and indulgence in drunkenness.