Cassava flour production. Cassava flour production is a major niche in the cassava processing industry. It covers planting, harvesting, processing and sales. Cassava is a popular root crop grown in Asia and many West African countries. Major producers of the crop are Thailand and Nigeria.
Why go into cassava production
The best area to grow cassava is in the tropical. Therefore production is only possible in tropical climate for excellent result. Reasons to go into cassava production are, the plant is easy to grow with good yeild. It has good economic value and appropriately priced. Cassava tuber has many uses in culinary application and industries.
Market demand are for the plant, tubers. There are even local use of the stems. In West African countries many uses of treated and processed cassava includes production of cassava flour, and cassava chips. The government of Nigeria has introduced cassava flour as a replacement for wheat flour in the production of bread.
Stages of cassava flour production
The cassava tubers undergoes transformation based on the final product. The tubers are washed, peeled, chopped, dried, and milled.
Uses of cassava
Cassava has many culinary and industrial application’s. Uses include made into cassava flour, cassava chips, added into livestock feed.
Cassava flour production
Cassava flour is a popular product from cassava plant. To produce the flour first purchase or harvest the mature roots. It takes about ten months to reach full maturity after planting.
Steps for cassava flour production
- Sorting. Make sure the cassava tubers are harvested 24 hours before processing. The tubers should be free of damage, infestation, or wound’s.
The initial washing of the fresh roots is the first step. The raw cassava is washed before dry sieving before peeling of skin.
After initial washing of the crop the next stage is peeling. Before processing the root into flour it is peeled.
After peeling it goes to crushing. To attain smooth uniformity the tubers are crushed into smooth mash.
The mash is subjected to de-watering to remove moisture content. This is an important step in cassava flour production.
- Flour cake breaking
The de-watering is done through a high pressure press technology. The resultant wet mash is transported to a miller unit.
- Drying and sieving
The wet mash is put through a drying and sieving process. Sieving is done to remove large particles while a flash dryer, dries the powder.
The final stage after the sieving, drying and milling is the packaging. Packaging involves machine sealing. It is important to conform to proper standardization to meet regulatory bodies provisions.
- The type of equipment needed is determined by the product. Common equipment are flash dryer, packaging machine and granulator. Others are. Sedimentation tank, starch extractor and hammer mill.
- Flash dryer
- Packaging machine
- Hydraulic press
- Sedimentation tank
- Starch extractor
- Hammer mill
In Nigeria 60% of the cassava is locally produced. Local production process involves cleaning the raw root, washing, and peeling. Others are washing of peeled roots, chopping to small pieces the sun drying. Some use ovens to dry at 55 C, this should remove the moisture content to less than 8%.
Cassava flour is getting popular as a replacement for wheat flour. Sell the flour to supermarkets, restaurant, fast-food outlet, bakers, private individuals.