CASSAVA, 25kg, bag


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Former Code(s): NFOOBEAN25-
OC subscriptions: included in supply or field order tools (e.g. UniField)
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Hardy shrub of the Euphorbiaceae family whose starchy tuberous roots are eaten.

  • Cassava is also called locally yuca, manioc, mandioca, tapioca, aipim, kassav (Haiti), akpu or ugburu (Nigeria), bankye (Ghana), mogo ou mihogo (Swahili speaking Africa)...
  • Gari (foufou) is a white flour made by milling of the roots of cassava. This flour, mixed with equal quantity of boiling water, makes food that can accompany sauced dishes.
  • Chikwangue, or mangbèré, manioc or plakali fouton are cassava breads.
  • Cassava can also be found as steam-cooked flour (attiéké), as flavoured biscuit...


Two main varieties are cultivated:

  • Bitter Cassava (Manihot utilissima Pohl), non edible without detoxication because of its high content in cyanhydric acid. Detoxication is done by soaking in water for several days, then drying in the form of whole tuber, pounded tuber (paste) or small pieces, and then transformation intotapioca or flour.
  • Sweet cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) with roots directly edible. A good preparation (peeling + cooking) is neverthless essential because sweet cassava contains cyanogenicglucosides (in smaller quantity). It is very difficult to store non tranformed cassava because of its fragility.
  • The cassava leaves are also consumed (with rice: mpondu, ngunza, ngoundja or other garnishes mafapa, mataba...). Consumption of leaves unboiled or not boiled enough can be lethal because of the presence of cyanide trace.

Technical specifications

For conservation reason, it is preferable to buy transformed cassava and always dried.

Cassava should be "sound and market quality" and "fit for human consumption":

Cassava should be:

  • sound: no rot, mould or deterioration such as to make it unfit for consumption (zero tolerance)
  • clean, free of any visible foreign matter
  • free of damage caused by pests
  • free of any abnormal smell and/or taste

Cassava must have been dried and its moisture content shall be less than 14%.

Codex alimentarius standard for prepared and packaged sweet cassava:

  • No flesh discolouration
  • Defects:
    • scarring or healed damage: not exceeding 10% of the total area
    • scraped surface: not exceeding 20% of the total area
    • these defects must not, in any case, affect the pulp of the product

The cut at the distal (narrow) end of the cassava should not exceed 2 cm in diameter.

The stalk end of the root should have a clean cut between 1cm and 2.5 cm in length.

The cassava must have been carefully harvested and have reached an appropriate degree of physiological development to enable it:

  • to withstand transport and handling
  • to arrive in satisfactory condition at the place of destination

Provisions concerning the size

Size is determined by the diameter at thickest cross-section of the produce, in accordance with the following table:

Size codeDiameter
A3.5 - 6.0 cm
B6.1 - 8.0 cm
C> 8.0 cm

In all cases, cassava must not be less than 300 g in weight and less than 20 cm in length.

Codex standard for edible cassava flour:

  • Moisture content: max 13%
  • Total hydrocyanic acid content: max 10 ppb

Codex standard for gari:

  • Moisture content: max 12%
  • Total hydrocyanic acid content: max 2 ppb determined as free hydrocyanic acid

A fumigation certificate dated within last 15 days must be presented upon receipt.

Packaging & Labelling

Net weight: 25 kg

All bags must be clean, dry and firmly sewn.

Recycled bags are not allowed.

Highest quality (minimum 85g/m2) polypropylene (PP) new bag with double stitching at the top and bottom

The bag may be lined with a polypropylene bag with the top edges of the bags sewn together.

Printing with ink approved for food contact (size of the letters: 20 mm minimum). The marking must remain readable after minimum 10 handlings.

  • Batch number composed of: supplier's initials/year/field dispatch code/order n° (ex: MAVI/08/NG01MFR/015)
  • Type of product and variety
  • Net weight of the bag
  • Crop date + transformation date + best-before date (BBD)
  • For sweet cassava, the information that cassava must be peeled and fully cooked prior to consumption is required

Instructions for use


Cassava roots and leaves cannot be consumed raw, consumption without appropriate preparation can be a threat to health. Cassava contains toxic cyanogenic glucosides, which are decomposed by linamarase, a naturally occuring enzyme in cassava, liberarting hydrogen cyanide (HCN). Cassava should always be peeled and fully cooked before consumption.


Cassava tubers are extremely perishable. It is possible to preserve them in the ground during almost two years, but once dug up, they start damaging within 40 to 48 hours after the crop.

It is the reason why it is preferable to buy transformed cassava, that has always been dried beforehand.

(Cf. Logistical handbook for food aid programs)


Follow the procedure QA-NFOS-SOP2 "Storage and stock management of food".

Preparing for storage

  • Staple foods should be stored separately from therapeutic foods to prevent any risk of crosscontamination.
  • Warehouses (walls, floor, etc.) should be given preventive treatment against insects and rodents before warehousing.
  • It is essential to check that the roof is watertight before the rainy season.

Storage organization

  • On pallets arranged in 6 to 8 pallet islands
  • Islands at least 1 m apart
  • At least 0.5 m from the walls
  • No more than 2 m high

Inventory monitoring

  • Given storage conditions in the field, it is recommended not storing for more than 6 months
  • Spraying of insecticide (CWATIIRSSC-) should be repeated every 8 to 12 weeks, when stocks are empty
  • Warehouse ventilation should be controlled to minimize ambient humidity
  • Inventory should be regularly organized (every 2 weeks), randomly testing bags to check for infestation and inspecting warehouse to monitor anti-insect and anti-rodent prevention measures

Procedures for Quality Control

  • Control upon receipt (quantity/quality): Use and fill the "check list for the control upon receipt": NSFOCRECOOE (English) / NSFOCRECOOF (French).
  • In case of purchase of big quantity, make an inspection company (SGS, Cotecna, Véritas, FAIDEX, etc.) perform an inspection before loading. Use and fill the "Inspection contract" ref. NSFOINSPCAF (French) / NSFOINSPCAE (English).
  • Control in case of suspicion (sending to a laboratory): use the analysis request form NSFOANALCAF (French) / NSFOANALCAE (English).
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