Recycling agricultural cellulosic wastes such as peanut hulls, wheat straw and sugarcane bagasse to reducing sugars and glucose has been conducted through radiation treatment. The conversion of such wastes to reducing sugars and glucose is a way to reduce their environmental impact.
Raw peanut hulls, wheat straw and sugarcane bagasse were subjected to gamma rays at dose levels of 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0 MGy. The chemical composition of raw and treated samples was determined.
The results indicated that the fiber components of these agro-wastes were significantly reduced, while the amount of glucose produced by enzymatic hydrolysis, cellulese, were increased with increasing radiation dose. At 3.0 MGy, the glucose yield was increased by about 4.6, 3.6 and 4.6 times grater than that from untreated peanut, wheat straw and bagasse, respectively. Also, the dry matter digestibility in vitro of these wastes was increased as a function of radiation dose.
It could be concluded that the radiation processing allows a good control of the degradation of such wastes into useful products, improves their nutritional values and availability to monogastric-, and ruminant animals.