Hyderabad Specialists Revive Grandpa’s Wholesome Consuming | Hyderabad Information
HYDERABAD: Have you ever thought of eating grains, vegetables and fruits that were preferred by great-grandfathers? Soon you can try dishes that were popular three or four generations ago, but disappeared from the daily menu with the industrialization of agriculture.
The town’s agronomists revitalize the foods that our ancestors nutritionally supported. Scientists at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (Icrisat) in Patancheru have compiled a mega-list of grains, vegetables, fruits, and oilseeds that were widely grown about 100 to 150 years ago.
Some were popular only four to five decades ago. The list also includes leafy greens, fruits, and vegetables that are rapidly disappearing from farmers’ priority crops.
According to scientists, tuber crops like sweet potato and yam and legumes like red gram and masoor dal (lentils) are losing popularity, and grains like sorghum have already made it onto the “forgotten foods” list. It may sound strange, but even popular potatoes, jackfruit, tamarind, and custard are losing their luster as preferred foods.
Some of the foods popular in great-grandfather’s time were amaranth, buckwheat, chenopod, finger millet, foxtail millet, proso millet, kodo millet, barn millet, rice bean, moth bean, adzuki bean, field bean, horse gram, taro, cassava, sweet potato , Sea buckthorn, job’s tears, paradise tree, gourd, sweet hibiscus, amaranth, grass pea, crab apple, star fruit, Indian jujube, rai, lafa, water lily, lotus and bamboo.
The Icrisat team, along with scientists from other research institutions, prepared the list as part of a global manifesto for submission to the UN Food Systems Summit later this year. Not only are these foods nutritious, they also solve food shortages. Last month, Icrisat scientists held an international seminar on grandpa’s food in the run-up to the UN summit.
Joanna Kane-Potaka, Icrisat’s Assistant General Manager, said, “Forgotten foods have the potential to solve several problems our food systems face today and in the future as the world’s population grows, climate insecurity becomes more prevalent, and nutrition related Illnesses are increasing. It is time we rid them of their ‘forgotten’ label and hug them to make the change we want to see, with farmers at the heart of the change to bring back biodiversity. ”
Dr. Ravi Khetrapal, executive secretary of the Asia Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions, said the manifesto, developed through collective action, will soon lead to a global plan of action to spread these foods across the board. “The key now is to have a good communication strategy in place to raise awareness about forgotten foods and take policy interventions to transform agro-food research and innovation systems,” he said.
Historical data shows that in the past, people grew and consumed a variety of food crops that were high in nutritional value. However, due to modern, industrialized agriculture and the resulting changes in politics and eating habits, many have moved away from traditional foods. These have now become almost forgotten foods.