$40 million project aims to revitalize Africa's orphaned crops

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A consortium of international partners, known as the African Orphan Crops Consortium, plans to identify at least two dozen African food crops and tree species that have been neglected by science because they are not economically important on the global market.

The idea is to genetically sequence and breed some of the continent’s most important, but neglected native crops.

As a member of the consortium, the World Agroforestry Centre will be highlighting the important tree species that could form part of this project.

“There are hundreds of tree species that could be contributing to better nutrition in communities across Africa provided farmers had access to quality planting material,” said Ramni Jamnadass, Head of Research into Quality Trees at the World Agroforestry Centre. “And trees often provide other benefits to smallholder farmers and the environment such as controlling erosion and providing shelter”.

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