Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Good news for the African savannah
The organisation PhytoTrade Africa must be feeling celebratory this morning, as through their good offices, farmers across the African continent will now be able to export baobab fruit into the EU. It cannot be imported whole, however: only the pulp will be allowed for use. Still, it is claimed to be nutritionally rich, and the potential market for baobab, as an ingredient in nutri-bars, smoothies and the like, is estimated at half a billion pounds. Very good news indeed for poor African families, who can harvest wild baobab (cultivation is unlikely, as the trees are very slow growers).Of course, it's good that the barrier to trade has come down, but let's recognise that this is exactly what has happened: a barrier to one particular trade has (partially) come down. Would that more came down, more quickly and more fully.Housekeeping: I'm on holiday for the next couple of weeks, so you can expect me to post even less than usual.