Photo slideshow of this project.
Concentrated Nutritional and Economic Enhancement of Ghanaian Diets Using Orange-Fleshed Sweetpotato Products
Target Country: Ghana
Principal Investigator: Eunice Bonsi, Tuskegee University
- Conrad Bonsi, Robert Zabawa, Prosper Doamekpor, and Ellene Kebede, Tuskegee University
- Curtis M. Jolly, Auburn University
- Kwame Offei, University of Ghana
- Felix K. Forfoe, University of Cape Coast, Ghana
- Wisdom A. Plahar, Food Research Institute, Ghana
- Marian Dorcas Quain, CSIR-Ghana
- Fafali Azaglo, Selasie Farms and Groceries, Ghana
- Joseph Apedo, Farmer Leader, Ghana
Leading forms of malnutrition in developing countries are iron deficiency anemia and vitamin A deficiency, linked to lack of consumption of dark green leafy and orange vegetables. Additionally, rural farmers, specifically women, suffer from combined effects of low incomes and nutritional deficiencies. Combating vitamin A deficiency in developing countries, especially in children, is the World Food Summit’s goal to reduce the world’s under-nourished population by one-half by 2015. As an excellent source of vitamin A, the orange flesh sweetpotato (OFS) has the potential to address vitamin A deficiency. Varieties of OFS released in Ghana in 2005 have increased levels of beta-carotene and range from yellow- to orange-flesh color. In previous studies in Ghana, consumers successfully accepted and utilized sweetpotato leaves as food through modified and culturally-acceptable traditional recipes. Initial results of consumer preference tests in Ghana of incorporating OFS as an ingredient in local breads showed significant positive response and willingness to pay extra if available. This project builds on this study by producing sweetpotato puree to be incorporated into traditional bread recipes, flour and chips as nutritional enrichment. The project increases economic activity for farmers, processors, and bakers and increases the availability and consumption of OFS for health.