The objective was to study the effect of processing on total carotenoid content of selected yellow cassava genotypes
Five yellow cassava genotypes bred by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) under the HarvestPlus Cassava Biofortification Project, were boiled, and some processed into gari, a dry fermented and roasted cassava product. The total carotenoid content of the fresh roots and their products were determined using the iCheckTM Carotene device and the results reported on dry matter basis.
The total carotenoids for the fresh cassava roots ranged from 4.74 ± 0.14 to 7.85 ± 0.09 µg/g. Processing yellow root cassava into gari led to a marginal decrease in total carotenoid with values between 4.82 ± 021 to 7.67 ± 0.01 µg/g. Boiling the cassava roots resulted in significantly lower contents of total carotenoids from 1.24 ± 0.05 to 2.12 ± 0.16 µg/g which were low compared to expected trends during boiling of yellow cassava in literature. The total carotenoids in the yellow cassava varieties were not much degraded during the fermentation and roasting processes involved in making gari.
Yellow root cassava can thus be used for products like gari as a vehicle for improving the vitamin A content in foods