The main insects that deteriorate stored maize grain in the tropics are maize weevils (Sitophilus zeamais). S. zeamais can cause significant post-harvest losses (PHL) in maize during storage. The objective of this study was to help farmers in Ghana appreciate and understand the benefits of using GrainPro bags compared to woven polypropylene bags (WPB) for storing maize grain. Eight farmers participated in the study, where 25 kg bags were loaded with 20 kg of naturally S. zeamais-infested white maize grain. The sealed bags were stored for 6 months at 28±6°C. A representative sample of 1 kg was taken from each bag for further analysis after homogenization. Percentages and ANOVA were calculated for all the quality parameters measured. The results showed that all the WPB bags were damaged, while the GrainPro bags remained intact. The damaged grain in WPB bags ranged from 91.9 to 94.4%, whereas in GrainPro bags, it ranged from 0.2 to 0.7%. Approximately 0 g of maize powder (fines) were produced within the GrainPro bags, compared to up to 73.7 g in WPB bags. S. zeamais mortality was 90% higher in GrainPro bags than in WPB bags. Therefore, GrainPro bags are suitable alternatives to WPB for maize storage.
Key words: Maize grain, GrainPro bags, Polypropylene bags, Hermetic storage, Sitophilus zeamais.
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