Controlled Atmospheric Store is a very advance form of Cold Store. It is an agriculture storage method in which concentration of oxygen, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, ethylene as well as temperature and humidity of a storage room are regulated. Use of CA technology can extend the life & freshness of fruit and vegetables from one month up to 12 months depending on physical properties of a particular fruit. For example, it is possible to store apples and pears for 12 months, cherries & cauliflowers up to 70 days and mangoes up to 50 days with proper technology.
Advantage of CA Store to Farmers
CA stores can also play a pivotal role in export of fruits and vegetable. Being agricultural economy, Pakistan can bring billions of dollars through export of fruits and vegetables by establishing a cold chain of CA stores all across country.
During peak season of any fruit or vegetable, prices are at minimum level and in most cases, the excessive crop is wasted also. Farmers can store their fruits and vegetable in peak season and sell them to market at best price when season is gone. For example Apple could be stored in August this year and sold next year in June or July at very high price. If a network of CA stores is established, income of farmers can go up by at least four times.
Controlled Atmospheric Storage facilities are playing main role in export of fruit and vegetable from developed and developing countries into world fruit markets. Like other agrarian economies, Pakistan can also earn billions of dollars by contributing its share in world’s fruit and vegetables export market.
Control Atmospheric stores can:
• Increased storage life.
• Profitable because they increase the storage life of the products.
• Chemical free so there is no need for chemical preservatives.
• Prevent the colour and quality of the preserved food
Increase in Exports through Control Atmosphere storage in Pakistan
i. To turn a large number of farms into fruit and vegetables exporting units:
Majority of farms and orchards of fruit & vegetable in Pakistan are ready to earn foreign exchange right away only if modern technology of CA store facility is provided in their respective areas. These fruit orchards are not like our other industries which require many years to come into production. With introduction of this technology, each farm can be turned into fruit exporting unit.
ii. To attract industrialists & private sector for investment in fruit export sector:
Give an introduction of new technology to private sector investors which may prove a catalyst in turning the country into one of the leading fruit exporting country on world map.
iii. Food security by preserving the excessive crop from wastage:
During peak season of any fruit or vegetable, prices are at minimum level and in most cases, the excessive crop is wasted each year due lack of post-harvest management, farmers can store their excessive produce during peak season and sell them as fresh in local market during off season and will not have to sell their harvest at throw away prices. They can sell them in local market at four times prices during off season.
iv. Take a large a share from 2 billion dollar export of Cherries from Chilli to China:
With CPEC, China will be the most viable market for Pakistani fruits. There are huge quantities of various exportable fruits which are grown in Gilgit region and can be easily be exported to bordering China by road, distance between Chili and China is 19640 Km. Chili is exporting more than 2 billion USD worth Cherry to China each year. Gilgit is the largest producer of cherry in Pakistan and is located at zero kilometre from China. Pakistan can export almost all of its cherries from region to China by using CA storage and fruit processing technology. One of the objective of this project is to take 50% share of cherries export from Chili to China which will be 1 billion dollars yearly.
v. Export from allies industries
Once CA store cold chain culture will kick into Pakistan’s Agriculture sector, it will create a number of export oriented industries as additional fruits related business. Export of fruit pulp, puree, jams and juices etc. May also bring huge foreign exchange.
vi. CA store culture will not only uplift the farmer communities of Pakistan in long run but will also earn billions of dollars for country like other agrarian economies.
Requirements of CA storage:
CA storage can only work in an air-tight structure. A leaky structure allows the fruits to absorb oxygen which decreases the quality of fruits.
Controlled Atmospheric storage can only be effective when there is low temperature. The temperature of the system is continuously controlled by using pipes that have refrigerants.
Unlike us, oxygen is not good for food preservation. Food has to be preserved in a low oxygen environment. O2 and CO2 levels are measured continuously through a gas analyser because to prevent the quality of food low respiration rate is required. CA storing is the best way to preserve food in low oxygen and high CO2 atmosphere. The normal level of oxygen is 21%. In CA stores the oxygen level is reduced to 1% – 3% to ensure the better preservation of food. Lower than 3% of carbon dioxide is needed to prevent food and only 1% of carbon dioxide is needed to prevent fruits from discoloration. High concentrations of carbon dioxide can cause browning disorders in fruits which makes it difficult for farmers to sell the fruits in the market.
Scrubbers are required to maintain the concentration of CO2 inside the controlled atmospheric cold storage. The levels of gases vary inside the storage because of the metabolic activity of fruits. So, scrubbers absorb the unnecessary CO2 inside the storage.
Izhar foster is the first and only company in Pakistan that has vast experience for CA stores & cold storages we have a mission to put Pakistan on world map as major fruit & vegetable exporting country through proper storage of produce in their perfect environment.
We are fully capable of providing turnkey solution for CA stores and cold stores. CA Stores can be customized according to your own needs. Contact us for further details.