Cassava roots are processed by peeling using knives, chopping into small pieces, then dried and milled into flour with dried maize, sorghum or millet. This traditional method of drying takes 7 to 14 days and is prone to contamination. The objective of this study was to add value to small scale farmers’ cassava in Busia County through solar drying. Fresh cassava roots were peeled and washed in running water and sliced using a motorized chipper. The chips were randomly distributed on two trays and uniformly spread. Temperatures were taken daily at an interval of 30 min. After introduction of wet cassava (wet weight 4.6 kg) chipping in the dryer, pick temperatures were; first day, 41.7°C, second day 49.3°C and third day 41.5°C. The experiment was terminated at 11.00 am in the third day after achieving a moisture content of 16% dry and dry weight of 1.985 kg. From the results, it was observed that it took the fabricated dryer two and a half days to dry the cassava chippings compared to traditional method’s ten days of drying. The efficient solar dryer is recommended for use by small scale cassava farmers in the County.
Key words: Cassava, drying, dryer, contamination, fabricated
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