Full Length Research Paper
Indigenous leafy vegetables play a significant socio-economic role for the local population. However, most of them used at the local level have not been studied a lot and their nutritional values are less implemented. This study focuses on the local nomenclature and the socio-cultural services of the species of Corchorus genus. Therefore, a collection followed by an ethnobotanical survey was carried out in 22 provinces of Burkina Faso during which a total of 450 people were surveyed. Four species of Corchorus genus, namely Corchorus olitorius, Corchorus tridens, Corchorus aestuans and Corchorus fascicularis were identified. The local names of these species vary from 1 to 4 names depending on ethnical groups. However, differentiation criteria related to status, productivity and/or preference of populations, pubescence and colour of plant are generally used to differentiate the species. All identified species are used as leafy vegetables and for the preparation of very tasty drinking (Dolo), because of their mucilage. As for medicine, 25.33% of the people surveyed gave information on illnesses such as anemia, stomach aches, and malaria treated with Corchorus genus species. Considering the socio-economic value of these species for the local population, research programs on its valorization through varietal improvement must be initiated.
Key words: Corchorus, leafy vegetable, valorization, Burkina Faso.
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