BACKGROUND: Orange-fleshed sweetpotato (OFSP) can be used to tackle vitamin A deficiency, a major public health problem in most developing countries. In East Africa, common ways of using sweetpotato include drying and subsequent storage. The aim of the study was to investigate the impact of drying and storage on the total carotenoid retention (as an estimate of provitamin A retention) from OFSP.
RESULTS: Losses of total carotenoid during drying were generally low (15% or less). Total carotenoid retention in OFSP was not dependent on the type of dryer (solar or sun). Sweetpotato cultivar (Ejumula, Kakamega, SPK004/1, SPK004/1/1, SPK004/6 or SPK004/6/6) had a significant effect on retention in drying (P
CONCLUSION: Losses of carotenoids during storage were considered to be more of a nutritional constraint to the utilisation of dried sweetpotato than losses occurring during drying. The relationship between characteristics of the cultivars and losses of carotenoids during drying should be taken into account in selection of cultivars for processing.
Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture (2010) 90 (4) 622-629 [doi: 10.1002/jsfa.3859]