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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Utilisation of indigenous plant foods in the urban and rural communities
Editor:Matenge, Sarah T.ISNI
Periodical:Indilinga: African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:food crops
edible plants
food consumption
rural households
urban households
External link:https://hdl.handle.net/10520/EJC61389
Abstract:In South Africa, malnutrition and poverty often co-exist with urbanization, which is associated with significant dietary change mostly due to neglect of indigenous foods and loss of indigenous knowledge. This article is based on a study aimed at assessing the availability, cultivation, consumption and general knowledge about indigenous plant foods in rural and urban communities. A comparative study was conducted among rural and urban populations of the North West Province of South Africa. Data were collected using a questionnaire (n=396 households), key informant interviews (n=4) and four focus groups. In the rural area more plant food was available and consumed than in the urban area, and fewer species were used as edible food material than expected. Consumers noted a decline in the availability of the species. The main reasons attributed to this decline were insufficient rainfall, poor soil quality, deforestation and overharvesting. Consumption of indigenous foods was influenced by price, culture, seasonality/availability, accessibility and diversity in markets. The elderly were more knowledgeable compared to the younger age groups and knowledge was widely distributed in rural areas. The study revealed that there was no cultivation of indigenous crops in the urban areas. In the rural areas, cultivation of indigenous crops was limited to a number of species for household consumption. Bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract]