Collaboration between ISHS, GHI and the World Vegetable Center in response to world poverty and malnutrition and the role of moringa as a nutrient rich food
We live in a world where poverty and malnutrition are major problems in many countries. Poverty is a major cause of malnutrition. The World Bank states that more than 2.1 billion people in the developing world lived on less than US $ 3.10 a day in 2012. The Global Horticulture Initiative (GHI) estimates that two billion people are micro-nutrient deficient, one billion people are overweight or obese and 805 million are chronically undernourished and suffer from energy-protein deficiency. It behooves us who live in wealthy circumstances to help our fellow human beings who are suffering. Much of the funding that goes to international aid agencies is committed to work on dietary staple crops and recently there has been a trend to fund research on biofortification of staple crops. There is tendency to disregard horticultural crops that can provide a wide range of micro-nutrients, vitamins, anti-oxidants, diversity, medicines and income. High value horticultural crops can yield an income on small farms and help alleviate poverty. The World Vegetable Center has made considerable progress in fostering production and use of vegetables in many poor countries. Moringa has a relative advantage as it provides the high levels of protein that are provided by staple crops; the high levels of nutrients and vitamins of vegetables; and, two amino acids (arginine and histidine) that are especially important for infants. In addition, moringa has a long history of medicinal uses. It grows quickly and research at the World Vegetable Center has demonstrated efficient high yielding production systems, ways it can be consumed as a vegetable, and the impact that it can have in alleviating poverty and malnutrition. The International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS) is a very active society and has members in over 140 countries. ISHS has collaborative agreements with both GHI and the World Vegetable Center, and this symposium is one example of our collaboration as a group of international bodies to promote the use of a high value and highly nutritious food crop that has the potential to help address the pressing problems of poverty and malnutrition.
Horticultural Production not elsewhere classified