Biodiversity, Food and Nutrition: A New Agenda for Sustainable Food Systems

This book underscores the importance of diverse, local foods. The authors show examples of how different varieties can be used to improve food, health, livelihoods and ecosystem services.

The book Biodiversity, Food and Nutrition - A New Agenda for Sustainable Food Systems was published by Bioversity International in May 2020. It is the latest addition to the Routledge Earthscan series Issues in Agricultural Biodiversity.

The book covers especially four countries’ work on research, policy, markets and awareness-raising: Brazil, Kenya, Sri Lanka and Turkey. It offers examples of how the many species and varieties around us can be leveraged to improve food, health, livelihoods and ecosystem services.

For example, by using nutritious regional food for school feeding or to tap other sources of income. In Brazil, national school-feeding policies include Amazonian fruits. Smallholder farmer groups in Kenya grow African leafy vegetables and sell them directly to schools.

In Sri Lanka, Women become their families’ primary earners through 'True Sri Lankan Taste' food businesses that utilise traditional varieties of grains, pulses, fruits, vegetables and tubers. And in Turkey, nearly a million visitors flock to an annual herb festival to learn about foraging and cooking Aegean wild edible plants, a nutritious part of local cuisine and culture as well as an opportunity for niche marketing.

Compiling lessons learned in dialogue with a global perspective, the book is the brainchild of the Biodiversity for Food and Nutrition Project, a multi-country, cross-sectoral initiative begun in 2012. Barriers and bright spots in promoting biodiversity for improved diets, livelihoods and ecosystems are explored with insights from country partners, reflections by researchers, and consideration of how localised activities can be adapted to additional countries and regions.

(Biodiversity International/ile)

Read more at Biodiversity International website