Fruits for the future


Tropical fruit-trees are important multipurpose species that supplement and improve the quality of diets and provide fodder, fuel, timber and medicine for smallholders. Harvesting these trees enables rural people, particularly women and children, to provide nutrition for a balanced diet, supplement family incomes and strengthen food security. The major constraints to the effective use of these crops are access to information on use, production and processing and ineffective marketing. Fruits for the future is a three-year project, funded by the UK Department for International Development, which aims to redress this balance and facilitate technology transfer to farmers through media, by distributing extension manuals emphasizing products, marketing and processing as well as production. Monographs and annotated bibliographies will be produced to collect and summarize existing research, in order to make better use of existing research results and identify possible gaps in the knowledge base for further research. A group of species has been selected on the basis of their regional or global importance, because there are no comprehensive compilations of information already in existence, and because of their suitability for adaptation, income generation, nutrition and food security, diversification and use in agroforestry system. They are:

  • Ziziphus mauritiana (Ber)
  • Tamarindus indica (Tamarind)
  • Dacryodes edulis (African Pear)
  • Adansonia digitata (Baobab)
  • Annona species (Cherimoya, sweet and sour sops, custard apples and other species).


ANON. (2000). Fruits for the future. Non-wood News 7: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). pp. 8-9. [Journal paper] [Paper]. (D)

Fruits for the future

Published 1 January 2000