Green, fertile floodplains and perennial wetlands mark much of the Caprivi, an extremely narrow, flat strip of land jutting out from northeastern Namibia, wedged between Angola, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The Kavango and Caprivians have beyond a doubt accumulated sound traditional knowledge and understanding on the utilization of their indigenous fruit tree species.
The project, “Domestication, post-harvest handling and marketing of selected indigenous fruit tree species,” implemented from 2002 to 2004 by the Namibian Government with technical support from the Forest Conservation Service of FAO’s Forestry
Department, aimed to provide local communities and national institutions with improved technologies for wild fruit tree domestication and processing for sustainable livelihoods.
Attempts were made, however, to improve genetically and propagate the three selected fruit trees Marula (Sclerocarya birrea), eembe or bird plum (Berchemia discolour) and monkey orange (Strychonos cocculoides) most preferred by local communities for their fruit quality and other desirable characteristics.
The country’s harvesting and processing of indigenous fruits shows promise.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation, (FAO) project helped improve use of wild fruit trees to supplement diets and incomes in rural communities.