Development and Performance Evaluation of a Tomato Packaging Container using Acrilonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene Plastic Sheets

Taofiq O Olanrewaju, Peter A Idah, Zinash D Osunde, AbdulSalam Kovo, Akeem O Lawal


Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) is one of the world’s major fresh and processed fruit and is the second most important vegetable crop after potato worldwide. Manual harvesting is commonly done which results in poor handling and huge postharvest losses. To reduce postharvest losses, an alternative tomato packaging container was developed using Acrilonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene (ABS) plastic sheet, and its performance was evaluated. The ABS plastic sheet was cut, fixed to the plastic holder, placed on top of the oven, and heated to soften. The softened plastic was then gently placed on the mould, and a vacuum pump was switched on till the plastic takes the shape of the mould. The container was subjected to a compression test using Dennison Universal Testing Machine (UTM) to determine the maximum bearable load. The containers were filled with fresh tomato fruits, and the farm gate weight, market weight, damaged weight, transit weight loss was measured using a weighing scale while the bruised area was measured using mathematical expressions. Results revealed that the developed baskets could accommodate a maximum compression force of 904 N, which implies that five baskets of fresh tomato fruits can be stacked on top of one another with minimal bruise damage and percentage damaged weight of 20 cm2 and 5% respectively. The tendency of the plastic packaging container to be stacked on top of one another with minimal postharvest losses makes it better than the conventional baskets currently used for packaging and transporting fresh tomato fruits.

Keywords - Tomato, postharvest losses, packaging container, bruise area

Full Text:



Abubakar, M. (2009). Development and Performance Evaluation of Improved Packaging for Mass Transportation of Tomato. An Unpublished M. Eng. Thesis submitted to the Department of Agricultural Engineering, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria.

Adakayi, P.E. (2012). An Assessment of the Rainfall and Temperature Variations in Parts of the Norther Nigeria. An Unpublished PhD thesis submitted to the Department of Geography and Planning, University of Jos. Pp 214.

Álvaro, J.A., Patricia, R., Gianpiero, P., Giovanna, F., Víctor, J.F., Ana, M.L. & Germán, A.F. (2018). Implementation of PEF Treatment at Real-Scale Tomatoes Processing Considering LCA Methodology as an Innovation Strategy in the Agri-Food Sector. Sustainability Journal, 10. Available online at

ASHRAE Handbook (2016). America Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers. Mark Owen Ed. Available online at

Babalis, A., Ntintakis, I., Chaidas, D. & Makris, A. (2013). Design and Development of innovative packaging for agricultural products. 6th International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies in Agriculture, Food and Environment. Elsiever Retrieved 17th August, 2015.

Babarinsa, F.A., & Ige, M.T. (2012b). Strength Parameters

of Packaged Roma Tomatoes at break Point under Compressive Loading. International Journal of Scientific and Engineering Research, 3(10): 98 - 103, October-2012 1 ISSN 2229-5518 Retrieved 30th April, 2015

Campo, E. A. (2006). The Complete Part Design Handbook, Hanser.

Çakmak, B., Alayunt, F., Akdeniz, C., Can, Z. & Aksoy, U. (2010). The Assessment of the Quality Losses of Fresh Fig Fruits during Transportation. Tarım Bilimleri Dergisi 16 (3).

Clément, V., James, T. & Stefanie, W. (2009). Designing container for handling fresh horticultural Produce. Postharvest Technologies for Horticultural Crops 2 25-47 ISBN: 978-81-308-0356-2 Editor:

Food Agricultural Organization Statistics (FAOSTAT) (2014). Global tomato production in 2012 (Rome: FAO).

Fernando I., Fei, J., Stanley, R., & Enshaei, H. (2018). Measurement and evaluation of the effect of vibration on fruits in transit—Review. Packaging Technology Science, 2018;1–16. Available online at Retrieved on 3/5/2019.

Girja, S., Srivasta, S., Kishor, P.R., & Umang, D. (2009).

Development of Corrugated Fiberboard Cartons for Long Distance Transport of Tomatoes in India. International Journal for Service Learning, 4(1): 31 – 43

Idah, P.A., Ajisegiri, E.S.A., & Yisa, M.G. (2007). Fruits and vegetables handling and transportation in Nigeria. Assumption University Journal of Technology, Thailand, 10(3): 175-183.

Inspec Ethylene Oxide Specialities (INEOS), (2007). Polypropylene Processing Guide. Olefins and Polymers USA. Retrieved from 9th June, 2016.

Isaac, K.A., Ernest, K.K., Etornam, K.A. & Harrison, A. (2015). An overview of Postharvest Losses in Tomato Production in Africa: Causes and Possible Prevention Strategies Journal of Biology, Agriculture and Healthcare 5 16 78 – 88.

Khurmi, R.S. & Gupta, J.K. (2004). A textbook of Machine Design (New Delhi: Eurasia Publishing House PVT. Ltd).

Muhammad, A.I., Isiaka, M., Fagge, A.A., Attanda, M.L., Lawan, I. & Dangora, N.D. (2015). Some Engineering Properties of three Varieties of Groundnut Pods and Kernels. Arid Zone journal of Engineering Technology and Enviroment, 11:61 – 75.

Najib, Y., Daniel, O., Ibrahim, M., Samson, A. & Rabia, S. (2017). A Study of the Surface Air Temperature Variations in Nigeria. The Open Atmospheric Science Journal, 11: 54 – 70.

Noureddine, B. (2018). Implementation of PEF Treatment at Real-Scale Tomatoes Processing Considering LCA Methodology as an Innovation Strategy in the Agri-Food Sector. Sustainability Journal, 10 Available online at

Onifade, T.B., Aregbesola, O.A., Ige, M.T. & Ajayi, A.O. (2013). Some physical properties and thin layer drying characteristics of local varieties of tomatoes (Lycopersicon lycopersicum).: Agriculture and Biology Journal of North America 4 3 274-79. Online ISSN 2151-7525, doi:10.5251/abjna.2013. Retrieved 20th September, 2015 from

Olanrewaju, T.O., Idah, P.A., Osunde, Z.D., and Kovo, A.S. (2018). Simulation of a Conceptual Fresh Tomato Fruits Packaging Container for Transportation. Proceedings of the 12th International Commission of Agricultural Engineering - CIGR (Commission Internale du Genie Rural) VI International Symposium Section VI of Postharvest Technology and Bio Process Engineering. Held at International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria. 22nd – 25th October, 2018.

Olanrewaju, T.O., Idah, P.A., Osunde, Z.D., and Kovo, A.S. (2017). Comparative Studies of Some Selected Polymers Suitable for Fresh Tomato Fruits Packaging. Proceedings of the 18th International Conference and 38th Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Institution of Agricultural Engineers. Held at Micheal Okpara University of Agriculture, Umidike, Abia State. 3rd – 6th October, 2017.

Ruiz-Altisent, M. & Ortiz-Canavate, J. (1999). Fruits and Vegetables. International Commission of Agricultural Engineering - CIGR (Commission Internale du Genie Rural) Handbook of Agricultural Engineering, Volume III. Plant Production Engineering. Bill A. Stout (Ed). American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE). Front matter and index, pp. i-xxviii + 617-632.

Sibomana, M. S., Workneh, T. S., & Audain, K. (2016). A review of postharvest handling and losses in the fresh tomato supply chain: A focus on sub-saharan Africa. Food Science 8:389–404DOI 10.1007/s12571-016-0562-1.

Solanke, A.U. and Kumar, P.A. (2013) Phenotyping of tomatoes. In: Panguluri, S.K. and Kumar, A.A. (eds) Phenotyping for Plant Breeding. Applications of Phenotyping Methods for Crop Improvement. Springer, New York, pp. 169–204.

Studman, C.J. (1999). Handling Systems and Packaging. International Commission of Agricultural Engineering - CIGR (Commission Internale du Genie Rural) Handbook of Agricultural Engineering, Volume IV. Agro-Processing Engineering. Baker-Arkena, F.W. (Ed). American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE). Pp 291 – 339.

Thomas, R.W., VernPutz, A., Arun, G. & Lawrence, J.F. (1993). Revised National Institute of Safety Health (NIOSH) equations for the design and evaluation of manual tasks. Ergonomics 36 7 749 –76

Vitale, A., Rocco, M., Arena, S., Giuffrida, F., Cassaniti, C. (2014) Tomato susceptibility to Fusarium crown and root rot: effect of grafting combination and proteomic analysis of tolerance expression in the rootstock. Plant Physiology and Biochemistry 83, 207–216.

Vursavuş, K. K., & Ozgüven, F. (2004). Determining the effects of vibration parameters and packaging method on mechanical damage in golden delicious apples. Turkish Journal of Agriculture and Forestry, 28 (5): 311-320.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2020 The Author(s)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Powered by ICT and Faculty of Engineering, FUOYE

Copyright © 2020 The Author(s). Published by Faculty of Engineering, FUOYE

image The FUOYEJET website and her metadata are licensed under CC BY-NC