Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

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Record number 414286
Title Mineral fertilizers improve the sensory quality of East African Highland bananas (Musa AAA-EA, cv. Kisansa)
Author(s) Taulya, G.; Asten, P.J.A. van; Nowakunda, K.; Kaddu-Mukasa, P.
Source Tree and Forestry Science and Biotechnology 4 (2010)1. - ISSN 1752-3753 - p. 93 - 96.
Department(s) Plant Production Systems
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2010
Abstract Some farmers in Uganda believe that fertilizers negatively affect the sensory attributes of cooking type bananas. This belief may hamper the adoption of fertilizers. To verify the validity of this belief, bunches (Musa AAA-EA, cv. ‘Kisansa’) from fertilized (i.e. N-P-K-Mg-Zn-S-B-Mo) and non-fertilized plots were harvested from on-station trials in central (Wakiso) and southwestern (Ntungamo) Uganda. Samples were anonymously tagged for preparation (boiled or steamed) and sensory evaluation by farmers from southwestern (n=33) and central Uganda (n=35). Data were analyzed in STATA using Tau-b rank test for proportions, median ranks and odds ratios. The frequency of evaluators ranking fertilized steamed bananas highly (i.e. ‘Best’ or ‘Second-best’) was significantly (P=0.05) higher (60%) than for non-fertilized bananas (42%). The opposite was true for boiled bananas (fertilized, 43% vs. non-fertilized, 60%). Irrespective of site of cultivation and evaluators’ origin, gender or age, fertilizers significantly (P=0.05) improved the appearance, odor, softness and acceptability of steamed bananas. For boiled bananas, attributes did not significantly differ between fertilizer treatments, except for appearance, which was significantly inferior (P=0.05) for fertilized bananas. This study shows that the belief that fertilizers negatively affect the sensory attributes of cooking type bananas is generally incorrect. Only when boiled, fertilized bananas appeared less attractive than non-fertilized bananas. The dominant and traditional way of preparing cooking type bananas in Uganda is through steaming (i.e., matooke). We recommend the application of fertilizer, as it will not only positively affect yield, but also the sensory quality of cooking type bananas.
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