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University of Johannesburg (2019)

Nutritional value of selected wild edible indigenous fruits of Southern Africa and their commercial potential

Sibiya, Nozipho Patience

Titre : Nutritional value of selected wild edible indigenous fruits of Southern Africa and their commercial potential

Auteur : Sibiya, Nozipho Patience

Université de soutenance : University of Johannesburg

Grade : Masters in Botany In Botany and Plant Biotechnology 2019

Résumé
Food and nutrition security is a complex issue which influences the livelihoods of communities and impacts the economy of nations. Southern Africa harbours a diverse range of wild edible indigenous fruits, which have provided populations with food for years. However, there is a lack of comprehensive data regarding the nutrient content of these indigenous plants, but most are anticipated to have potentially good nutritional value. The purpose of this study was to compile a comprehensive list of wild edible indigenous fruits consumed in southern Africa, as well as available data on their nutritional qualities, in order to identify existing knowledge gaps with regards to their nutritional qualities. Selected plants were further evaluated for their proximate composition mineral, vitamin, and amino acid content, as well as the total energy value (caloric value). A total of 60 species, distributed in 35 families was captured. The families Cucurbitaceae and Anacardiaceae had the most species (7 spp.) and more coverage in terms of minerals and proximate value than other families. Interestingly, the study showed that the mineral elements potassium and calcium were present in substantial amounts in most fruits ranging from 521.946 to 14289.451 mg/kg. Even though most fruits were high in only one mineral element, Cordyla africana had the highest content of six minerals (i.e. Al, Fe, Mn, Pb, Se and Zn). The following fruits had the highest proximate values (shown in brackets) : Carissa macrocarpa (ash at 20.42 mg/100g), Syzygium guineense (fat at 7.75 mg/100g), Phoenix reclinata (fibre at 29.89 mg/100g), Halleria lucida (protein at 6.98 mg/100g) and (carbohydrates at 36.98 mg/100g). The high protein content in Halleria lucida was exhibited by the highest amino acid content for histidine. Most fruits showed the presence of vitamin C but not vitamin A. Only Dovyalis longispina (902.88 mg/100g), Manilkara mochisia (25.307 mg/100g), Garcinia livingstonei (11.197 mg/100g) and Syzygium guineense (1.742 mg/100g) displayed significant amounts of vitamin A. Overall, the study showed that most wild edible fruits have good nutritional value, however, these fruits require more scientific scrutiny in order to thrive in the commercial markets.

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Page publiée le 1er janvier 2021