Vegetables diversify and balance diets. How? By supplying nutrients, calories, protein and fiber, and adding color, texture and taste to meals. Vegetables diversify and expand rural and urban economies. How? By providing small-scale farmers with the means to generate income and improve their livelihoods from a cornucopia of high value, fast-growing, health-promoting crops.
In the backyard, in pots, alongside fields and roads: wherever available soil and space can be found, gardens can grow. Home gardens contribute to nutritional and food security for the world’s poorest families by ensuring nutrition-packed, health-promoting vegetables are close at hand, free for the tending, and available year-round.
Tomato is a high value vegetable crop and an important source of vitamins A and C in human diets, but average per-hectare tomato yields in tropical Asia and Africa are half that realized in temperate regions. With well-adapted, disease-resistant varieties, farmers in the tropics can increase tomato yields and improve their incomes.
Genetically Modified Vegetables
Tissue culture, marker assisted selection, genetic modification and other biotechnologies complement traditional vegetable breeding methods. This paper outlines the World Vegetable Center’s policy on the development and use of GM vegetables:
An ideal seed supply and distribution system needs institutional and policy support to ensure the participation of all key entities. This policy brief reviews the extent to which existing policies and laws support traditional African vegetable seed production in West and Central Africa to inform the debate on the conformity of seed production. Suggestions are presented to foster a policy environment to improve existing seed supply and distribution systems.Promoting Production and Consumption of Traditional African Vegetables in West and Central Africa: Policy Lessons from National Seed Systems
Kamga, T. R., Tenkouano, A., Afari-Sefa, V., Fleissner, K., Ndoye, O.