Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Contribution of the Wild Food Plants in the Food System of Tribal Belt of Pakistan; The Pak - Afghan Border Region

Version 1 : Received: 18 September 2020 / Approved: 19 September 2020 / Online: 19 September 2020 (10:05:21 CEST)

How to cite: Khan, S.M.; Abdullah, A. Contribution of the Wild Food Plants in the Food System of Tribal Belt of Pakistan; The Pak - Afghan Border Region. Preprints 2020, 2020090454 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202009.0454.v1). Khan, S.M.; Abdullah, A. Contribution of the Wild Food Plants in the Food System of Tribal Belt of Pakistan; The Pak - Afghan Border Region. Preprints 2020, 2020090454 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202009.0454.v1).

Abstract

The tribal belt of Pakistan-the Pak-Afghan border region is famous for its unique culture, ethnography and wild food plants and traditional knowledge. People of these regions gather wild plants for number of purposes including plants or plant parts for direct use, use it in the traditional cuisines and selling in local markets. However, there is huge lack of documentation of food system particularly the Wild Food Plants (WFPs). In current study we have focused on the uses and contributions of the WFPs in the tribal traditional food system. The ethnobotanical data were gathered through questionnaire surveys with Eighty-four informants 69 men and 15 women belonging to 21 different villages. We documented Sixty-three WFP species belonging to 34 botanical families, of which 27 were used as vegetables, 24 as fruits, 6 in different kinds of chutneys (starters) formation and six as fresh food species. Fruits were the mostly used part (40%) followed by leaves (24%), aerial parts (24%), seeds (7%), stem (3%), legume (2%) and young inflorescence (1%). Use of Carthamus oxycanthus & Pinus roxburghii seeds and Marsillea quadrifolia leaves were the novel reports for the gastronomy of Pakistan. The results elucidate that WFPs have a significant contribution in the Tribal Food Systems. Tribal people use WFPs not only due to their nutritional importance but also as a cultural practice - an inseparable component of the tribal communities. This important traditional Knowledge about the consumption of WFPs has been eroding with an alarming speed among the younger generations due to introduction of fast food chains, modernization, and globalization. Therefore, appropriates strategies are imperative not only to safeguard traditional knowledge but also the cultural heritage, food security and hence public healthcare via food supplement in the region.

Subject Areas

gastronomy; livelihood; public healthcare; traditional knowledge; wild food plants; tribal belt

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