‘Growing a Balanced Diet’

The material already distributed to produce a balanced, healthy diet has helped many and it is gratifying to have had so many letters indicating that the advice has been helpful and already produced results. Not only is there a need to grow a variety of crops in order to provide the nutrients for healthy living, but these can also enrich the soil and provide food, even in adverse weather conditions.

From time to time, Africa suffers from drought, so we have emphasized the growing of some drought-resistant crops. These need good cultivation, using quality seeds and a rotation of crops in order to not impoverish the ground.

There is a wide selection of suitable literature in Africa, often free to those living in Africa, but relatively expensive to those in non-African countries. We particularly recommend the series of books by the Swedish Cooperative Centre, these are self-study manuals for drought mitigation in rural communities, available from the Swedish Cooperative Centres at: 70 Livingstone Avenue, No 1 Verona Gardens, Harare, Zimbabwe; SCC, P.O.Box 32012, 93 Kudu Road, Lusaka, Zambia; SCC, P.O.Box 45767, Bairobi, Kenya.

The titles are:

Principles of Planning Vegetable Production

Traditional Vegetable Crop Production

Root Crop Production

Production of some exotic Vegetable Crops

Seed Production and Vegetable Processing

Conservation Farming

Whilst more expensive, there is a series of small books for small-scale sustainable agriculture in the tropics by the Agromisa Organisation, P.O.Box 41, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands.

There is also a wide range of information and advice to be had from local Agricultural Advisers to help those with a little land to produce food for themselves and even to sell, but it does require effort to achieve results.

The increasing needs of the poor, and general world conditions, economic circumstances and changing weather patterns, mean there is an increasing possibility that the available food supply in Africa could be very much reduced and consequently there is greater need where possible for people to learn how to become self-sufficient.

In cases where you are unable to get the required information CAT will do its best to let you have, for example, any of the above six booklets from the Swedish Cooperative Centre.

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