Cold Storage Techniques for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
A two-day training seminar on the ‘Maintenance and Service of Refrigeration Equipment’ for cold storage engineers and representatives of the business sector involved in the storage of fruits and vegetables has been held in Namangan. The seminar was organised by the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources of the Republic of Uzbekistan, and the USAID Project ‘Aglinks +’, with the assistance of the UNDP ‘Support to Foreign Trade and Investment Promotion in Uzbekistan’ project.
The seminar, attended by more than 40 people, was conducted by the international engineer and trainer Mr. Jerry Meyer who has 36 years of experience within the fields of mechanics, electricity and refrigeration equipment. During the two days Mr. Meyer used interactive education techniques to share knowledge and experience regarding the principles involved in cold storage, the operation of cooling systems, the main causes of equipment failures and the methods of preventing technological damage.
Interest in the seminar’s topic was inspired by the fact that prior to the seminar Mr. Meyer visited cold storage facilities and learned about the nation’s experience with the technology, and provided advice on methods of improving the work of refrigeration systems. In particular Mr. Meyer visited the Turakurgan cold storage site, which is being reconstructed within the ‘Aid for Trade’ component of the ‘Support to Foreign Trade and Investment Promotion in Uzbekistan’ project, and gave specific recommendations for addressing the technical problems he identified.
The seminar participants benefited from not only learning about examples of the operation of refrigeration systems in other countries, but also from taking part in discussions of specific experiences in running refrigeration equipment at local facilities. This created a good platform for the active involvement of the seminar participants in a discussion and comparative analysis.
During the seminar Mr. Meyer demonstrated the tools and measuring devices needed to diagnose the conditions of refrigeration systems, including pressure gauges, thermometers, filters, pressure sensors, psychrometers, and explained their functional purposes in detail.
At the training’s conclusion the project manager of the UNDP ‘Support to Foreign Trade and Investment Promotion in Uzbekistan’ project Mr. Jakhongir Imamnazarov presented practical guidelines regarding the cold storage of fruits and vegetables, which were prepared within the project’s framework. The presentation covered the main sections of the guidelines, and offered a brief overview of the recommendations for storing fruits and vegetables, and for harvest picking and transportation.
This workshop is not the first example of the UNDP project’s cooperation with 'Aglinks +' within the field of improving the knowledge and skills of entrepreneurs in cold storage, and it is expected that additional joint activities will be conducted in the future.