Indigenous knowledge and socio-economic significance of Enset (Ensete ventricosum (Welw.) Cheeseman) cultivation and food processing in Sidama, Southern Ethiopia

Authors

  • Yemane G. Egziabher Mekelle University
  • Firew Kebede Plant Eco-physiologist Department of Biology College of Natural and Computational Sciences Hawassa University
  • Dejene Kassahun Mengistu Plant Breeder Department of Dryland Crop and Horticultural Sciences College of Dryland Agriculture and Natural Resources Mekelle University
  • Haile Kiros Tadesse Bio-technologist Department of Biotechnology Mekelle Institute of Technology Mekelle University
  • Milete Mahari Human Ecologist Department of Biology College of Natural and ComputationalSciences Mekelle University
  • Yemane Welday Management of Water resources, Soil and Food conservation expert Department of Land Resource Management and Environmental Protection College of Dry Land Agriculture and Natural Resources Mekelle University

Keywords:

Enset, indigenous knowledge, landrace diversity, Sidama

Abstract

Background: Peoples’ culture and natural resources tie has first line survival value in Ethiopia.  The drought resistant crop locally called enset supports about 20 million populations. The aim of this research is to investigate the farmer’s indigenous knowledge in cultivation, food processing and use value of enset in Sidama, southern Ethiopia.

Methods: The research was undertaken in Hula district in March and May 2017. The study area is predominantly enset growing highland ranging from2100-3200 masl. Focus group discussion with key informants and interview with development agents were used to collect data in six kebelles. For enset landraces survey about 13 households backyard were randomly visited and the result was concretized with field observation.

Results: A total of 26 landraces were recorded and farmers identify enset landrace using combinations of agro-morphological traits. Utilitarian and cultural values are the main determining factors for the maintenance and conservation of large number of landraces. Majority (80%) of the people are dependent on kocho-bulla and Amicho for food and suckers for income. The farmers’ indigenous knowledge in selection and maintenance of enset landrace diversity is powerful; environmental stresses and selection are the main causes for the loss of some landraces.

Conclusion: There is strong link between the community and the diverse landraces of enset in the study area. Food processing from enset is laborious, hence demands technological innovation that ease job and maintains food quality. The use of suckers as means of reproduction helped to maintain the quality existed but adaptation to changing climate is low and seed utilization must be encouraged during in-situ conservation.

Key words: Enset, indigenous knowledge, landrace diversity, Sidama

Author Biographies

Yemane G. Egziabher, Mekelle University

Associate Professor in Plant Ecophysiology

Department of Dryland Crop and Horticultural Sciences

College of Dryland Agriculture and Natural Resources

Mekelle University

Firew Kebede, Plant Eco-physiologist Department of Biology College of Natural and Computational Sciences Hawassa University

Assitant Professor in Plant Ecophysiology

Department of of Biology
College of Natural and Computational Sciences
Hawassa University

Dejene Kassahun Mengistu, Plant Breeder Department of Dryland Crop and Horticultural Sciences College of Dryland Agriculture and Natural Resources Mekelle University

Associate Professor in Plant Breeding
Department of Dryland Crop and Horticultural Sciences

College of Dryland Agriculture and Natural Resources

Mekelle University

Haile Kiros Tadesse, Bio-technologist Department of Biotechnology Mekelle Institute of Technology Mekelle University

Lecturer in Plant Biotechnology

Department of Biotechnology
Mekelle Institute of Technology

Mekelle University

Milete Mahari, Human Ecologist Department of Biology College of Natural and ComputationalSciences Mekelle University

Lecturer in Human Ecology
Department of Biology
College of Natural and ComputationalSciences
Mekelle University

Yemane Welday, Management of Water resources, Soil and Food conservation expert Department of Land Resource Management and Environmental Protection College of Dry Land Agriculture and Natural Resources Mekelle University

Lecture in Management of Water resources, Soil and Food conservation

Department of Land Resource Management and Environmental Protection

College of Dry Land Agriculture and Natural Resources

Mekelle University

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Published

2020-01-25

How to Cite

G. Egziabher, Y., Kebede, F., Kassahun Mengistu, D., Tadesse, H. K., Mahari, M., & Welday, Y. (2020). Indigenous knowledge and socio-economic significance of Enset (Ensete ventricosum (Welw.) Cheeseman) cultivation and food processing in Sidama, Southern Ethiopia. Ethnobotany Research and Applications, 19, 1–17. Retrieved from https://ethnobotanyjournal.org/era/index.php/era/article/view/1767

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Section

Research