Ethnobotany, diverse food uses, claimed health benefits and implications on conservation of barley landraces in North Eastern Ethiopia highlands

Shewayrga, Hailemichael and Sopade, Peter A. (2011) Ethnobotany, diverse food uses, claimed health benefits and implications on conservation of barley landraces in North Eastern Ethiopia highlands. Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, 7 . doi:10.1186/1746-4269-7-19

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Author Shewayrga, Hailemichael
Sopade, Peter A.
Title Ethnobotany, diverse food uses, claimed health benefits and implications on conservation of barley landraces in North Eastern Ethiopia highlands
Journal name Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1746-4269
Publication date 2011-06-28
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1186/1746-4269-7-19
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 7
Total pages 15
Place of publication London, United Kindgom
Publisher BioMed Central
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: Barley is the number one food crop in the highland parts of North Eastern Ethiopia produced by subsistence farmers grown as landraces. Information on the ethnobotany, food utilization and maintenance of barley landraces is valuable to design and plan germplasm conservation strategies as well as to improve food utilization of barley.
Methods: A study, involving field visits and household interviews, was conducted in three administrative zones. Eleven districts from the three zones, five kebeles in each district and five households from each kebele were visited to gather information on the ethnobotany, the utilization of barley and how barley end-uses influence the maintenance of landrace diversity.
Results: According to farmers, barley is the “king of crops” and it is put for diverse uses with more than 20 types of barley dishes and beverages reportedly prepared in the study area. The products are prepared from either boiled/roasted whole grain, raw- and roasted-milled grain, or cracked grain as main, side, ceremonial, and recuperating dishes. The various barley traditional foods have perceived qualities and health benefits by the farmers. Fifteen diverse barley landraces were reported by farmers, and the ethnobotany of the landraces reflects key quantitative and qualitative traits. Some landraces that are preferred for their culinary qualities are being marginalized due to moisture shortage and soil degradation.
Conclusions: Farmers’ preference of different landraces for various end-use qualities is one of the important factors that affect the decision process of landraces maintenance, which in turn affect genetic diversity. Further studies on improving maintenance of landraces, developing suitable varieties and improving the food utilization of barley including processing techniques could contribute to food security of the area.
Keyword Plant genetic resources
On-farm conservation
Hull-less barley
Hypercholesterolemic men
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences Publications
 
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