African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6693

Full Length Research Paper

Self-build silos for storage of cereals in African rural villages

Matteo Barbari
  • Matteo Barbari
  • Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems(GESAAF) -University of Firenze Via San Bonaventura, 13 – 50145 Firenze - Italy.
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Massimo Monti
  • Massimo Monti
  • Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems(GESAAF) -University of Firenze Via San Bonaventura, 13 – 50145 Firenze - Italy.
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Giuseppe Rossi
  • Giuseppe Rossi
  • Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems(GESAAF) -University of Firenze Via San Bonaventura, 13 – 50145 Firenze - Italy.
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Stefano Simonini
  • Stefano Simonini
  • Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems(GESAAF) -University of Firenze Via San Bonaventura, 13 – 50145 Firenze - Italy.
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Francesco Sorbetti Guerri
  • Francesco Sorbetti Guerri
  • Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems(GESAAF) -University of Firenze Via San Bonaventura, 13 – 50145 Firenze - Italy.
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  •  Received: 26 July 2013
  •  Accepted: 07 April 2014
  •  Published: 24 April 2014

Abstract

Prototypes of silos for the storage of cereals were designed and built at the Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Systems of University of Firenze. The silos were planned specifically to be used in Tanzania, by individual farmers operating in the inland areas of the country. Nevertheless, with a capacity of 1 m3 and 2 m3, they can be considered suitable for several African areas. Except for some details that require local blacksmith workshops, the users can self-build the silos. The possibility to use materials and equipment normally available on site is included among the criteria to take into account during the design phase. For example, corrugated galvanized iron, employed by the local population as cover for houses, can be considered a suitable material, as well as raw-earth, traditionally used in African rural areas. To demonstrate the reliability of the design and the functionality of the adopted solutions, unskilled staff of the Department built the silo in the workshop, using only simple tools available almost anywhere. The paper gives suitable information to replicate the building of this kind of silos, where unskilled labor is available at the family and/or farm level.

 

Key words: Silos, self-building, raw-earth, rural villages, maize storage, Tanzania.