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Species of herbal spices grown in the poor farmers’ home gardens of West Shoa, Highlands of Ethiopia: an Ethnobotanical account

M.I. Zuberi, Birhanu Kebede, Teklu Gosaye, Olika Belachew

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.4(4), 164-185, April 2014


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Survey of local market and villages around Ambo, Western Highlands of Ethiopia identified a group of herbal species regularly used in preparation of spice mixes for traditional Ethiopian dishes. The herbal species, local (Amheric) names being Basobila, Kosorat, Tosegn, Sega matbasha, Tenadam and Altufa, were not reported as a group before. The specimens collected from the market and village were documented with botanical identification, ethnobotanical investigation and role in the livelihood of the poor small farmers. Field survey indicated the species being grown in home gardens of nearby villages, their cultivation, marketing, preparation of the spice mixes and dishes traditional to the women only. Information and literature survey suggest, apart from socio-economic importance, these wild herbs have bright potential for poverty alleviation, improved women’s contribution to family income, small farmers’ adaptability to climate change. The issues of domestication, selection / breeding, value chain analysis resulting in value addition and improved marketing, utilization of WTO’s TRIPS under the protection of geographical indication (GI) were discussed.


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Species of herbal spices grown in the poor farmers’ home gardens of West Shoa, Highlands of Ethiopia: an Ethnobotanical account

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