What is it about?

The paper highlights the trade potential benefits of cowpea in Southern Africa, despite a number of challenges encountered in gaining access to good quality seed that meets market demands. Cowpeas, just like other orphaned crops are labelled as "poor people's food".

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Why is it important?

Despite the contribution of cowpeas to food security and the crop's numerous nutritional and health attributes, consumers in South Africa have labelled cowpeas, among other leguminous crops as a “poor people's food”; hence the gradual decline in the cultivation and use of the crop. This resulted in the observed high reliance on limited number of plant based protein crops and excessive consumption of livestock product. There is a need to improve upon the legume seed system. Furthermore, increase awareness about the nutritional and health benefits of cowpeas and other leguminous crops, among other socio-economic benefits.


Consumers should explore indigenous crops as sources of protein

Dr Moses Lubinga
National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC)

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Genetic resources management, seed production constraints and trade performance of orphan crops in Southern Africa: A case of Cowpea, South African Journal of Botany, May 2022, Elsevier, DOI: 10.1016/j.sajb.2021.11.007.
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