|SPORE Bulletin of the CTA No. 20 (CTA Spore, 1989, 16 p.)|
Rural Africa is rich in nutritious food plants but the majority have been ignored by research and then forgotten by farmers in the shift towards the production of a few major crops such as wheat rice and maize. Yet many traditional food plants can supplement the cereal staples because they contain essential nutrients. They are easily grown on small family plots and need minimal inputs of water, fertilizer and pesticide. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has published Traditional food plants as a resource book aimed at promoting the exploitation of these species, particularly in the arid and sub-humid lands of eastern Africa. More than 100 food plants are described and illustrated and detailed information is given about names distribution, food value, uses and other features. The book is undoubtedly useful for reference and it may also encourage educators and trainers to include traditional food plants in extension programmes for the improvement of family health and rural development.
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