First and second generation research effort on commodising indigenous fruit tree crops in southern Africa uri icon


  • Harvesting of indigenous fruits from the wild provides important food supplements and cash income for many people in the rural communities. Household analysis in Southern Africa indicated that indigenous fruits can reduce vulnerability of rural households to income poverty and food insecurity. Research efforts on indigenous fruit trees in Southern Africa involved two interconnected phases. The first generation phase which included the development of long-term domestication strategies, selection of priority species, tree germplasm collection and genetic improvement, propagation systems, and field management. The second generation phase included participatory development of superior cultivars, analyses of production economics, adoption, post-harvest handling, enterprise and product development, and market research of indigenous fruits. This paper synthesises first and second generation research carried out on indigenous fruit tree domestication, utilisation, and commercialisation in Southern Africa. It also presents the lessons learned and provides the way forward to enhance food security and income generation in Southern Africa

publication date

  • 2009