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A holistic approach to the domestication and commercialization of non-timber forest products

Frank Taylor, Stanley M. Mateke and Karen J. Butterworth
Veld Products Research
PO Box 2020, Gaborone, Botswana

Abstract

In the southern African context, this paper looks at the formal and informal sectoral approaches to the commercialization of non-timber forest products (NTFPs). Various trends are identified, such as, urban market resistance to traditional wild foods, occurrence of pie-in-the-sky planning and government apathy towards `minor' forest products. In addition, and importantly, there is a general lack of knowledge and awareness on the part of NGOs and development agencies of the wide range of potential NTFPs that can be produced in any ecosystem. Special emphasis is given here to the risks and dangers of commercializing NTFPs which, without management controls, can impose severe pressure on the resource base, or even threaten extinction.

The commercialization of any NTFPs must be implemented using a holistic approach. There is a critical need to ensure that the gatherers and producers obtain maximum benefits and are directly involved in the sustainable management of their resources. Such an approach requires full participation of the target groups, in all stages of planning from conception to implementation. The roles of NGOs, government and donor agencies are examined and suggestions made for various approaches, which emphasize the call for sensitivity to cultural needs and biases. Research needs are examined with particular regard to identifying market demands and knowledge gaps. Special emphasis is put on product design and development; processing and quality control; domestication and genetic improvement of indigenous plants of high economic potential; the development of innovative agroforestry techniques, particularly for semi-arid areas; and the cataloguing of the value of NTFPs that contribute to each country's gross national product. The latter information has caused at least one African government to change its forest policy in favour of NTFPs.

Proposals are made for regional cooperation and collaboration in the form of networking, personnel exchange and sabbaticals, and the development of one or more centres of excellence, which can become regional resource and training centres.

Finally, an overview is given of the research work undertaken by Veld Products Research (VPR), an NGO in Botswana. Since 1989, VPR has been involved in the domestication of indigenous fruit trees of socioeconomic importance. VPR recently started research in agroforestry, using water-harvesting microcatchment systems for traditional crops, so as to improve the possibility of a harvest in poor rainfall years.

Introduction

Veld Products Research (VPR) is an NGO established in Botswana in 1981, to promote the country's natural resources and tackle the problems associated with them. Many of these resources and problems are common to other countries of eastern and southern Africa.

For the past decade, there has been a growing awareness of the importance of non-timber forest products (NTFPs), not only for the role they play in the subsistence economy, but also for their potential and real importance to the economies of many developing countries.

There is considerable ignorance in many quarters concerning the optimal utilization of this resource base to uplift the rural poor, while at the same time protecting biodiversity and ensuring sustainability. What often happens in practice is that any NTFP that is in high demand is exploited unsustainably, until the resource base is exhausted. Invariably, the middlemen gain the profits at the expense of the economically poor gatherers.

In addition to the known NTFPs in any country, there are often many more with good commercial potential known only to local people. Potentially these NTFPs are often industrial products, such as gums, resins and essential oils, while others could include florist materials, ornamental plants, etc. This paper does not claim to have all the answers, but it hopes to point out some possible avenues of exploration, as well as to open discussion on important issues that have to be taken into account in the domestication and commercialization of NTFPs.

Commercialization of NTFPs

Government policies

Very few governments in Africa are aware of the extent of use, or the value, of NTFPs in the informal sector. Nor are they aware of the magnitude of dependence of the rural poor on these resources. This ignorance has caused some governments and international agencies to refer to these products as `minor forest products'. The result has often been forest policies that are detrimental to both the resources and the people who depend on them.

Frequently, government interests conflict with those of the people living on the edges of forest reserves and game parks. However, if governments can be made aware of the real value of NTFPs to the people, as well as to the national economy, it may be possible to work out practical solutions, in collaboration with the people. At the same time, solutions can be found for protecting the resource base.

The Botswana government recently realized that the value of timber exports (USD 15.5 million) was exceeded by the value of NTFPs (estimated to be in excess of USD 26 million). This resulted in the Division of Forestry holding consultative workshops in the districts that have communal-forest areas, as well as designated forest reserves. The chiefs, headmen, councillors, members of local conservation committees, etc., were invited to contribute to discussion on how they would like the forest policy to be modified to meet their needs for sustainable utilization and management.

Without such enlightened government policy, the NTFP resource base of Botswana, and of many other countries, will continue to be eroded. To achieve an adequate solution, both governments and the people need a change of mindset. Governments need to be made aware of the real value of NTFP resources to their national economies, and also to be sensitized to the needs of the population who are dependent on them. On the other hand, people, particularly those in countries where there have been serious conflicts with the government, need to change their attitude. There is a tendency to think that government is always the `enemy' and that its regulations are only there to be broken.

To assist governments to realize the importance of NTFPs, it is essential that inventories, valuations, and consumption and marketing studies be undertaken in their countries (see Kleinn, this volume). There are some differences of opinion on how to place values on NTFPs, especially those that are gathered for domestic consumption. It is essential that researchers and resource managers in the region agree to use a uniform method to calculate value, to arrive at statistics that are realistic and comparable from one country to another.

Informal markets

Informal markets generally share similar characteristics throughout the eastern and southern African region, with the possible exception of those in Botswana, where informal market places did not exist until after independence.

Marketing channels for informal markets can vary according to the product and from district to district, but in general they will still have some commonalities throughout the region. In most cases, the poor and marginalized groups do most of the harvesting of NTFPs. They either peddle their wares within the local community or else sell them to middlemen, who take the products to distant markets where better prices are available. Either way, the harvesters-gatherers invariably receive a pittance while the middlemen make profits.

In cases of substantial supplies of certain NTFPs, tens of thousands of people are gainfully employed each season in harvesting the resources and selling to middlemen. These resources include Uapaca kirkiana Muell. Arg., a wild fruit, and Gonimbrosia belina, otherwise known as the mopane worm.

The informal market for traditional medicines is substantial, with the majority of people in some countries being dependent on them, preferring them to western medicine. Unfortunately, harvesting pressure has invariably caused severe reductions in medicinal plant populations, and their extinction in some areas. The active ingredients are usually contained in the roots and bark of plants, the harvesting of which can kill the plants. Traditional harvesting methods, which usually protected the plants to some extent, are now being ignored, as the pressure to generate income exceeds concern for the resource base.

This problem has become particularly apparent in the Kwa-Zulu Natal Province of South Africa, where the Zulu sangomas and herbalists are renowned for their herbal treatments (see Manders, this volume). To counteract this overexploitation, the Durban Parks Board started a programme of domestication of the most important medicinal plants. After the programme had extensive publicity, many herbalists now are growing their own high-value herbs and benefiting financially.

Formal markets

The range of NTFPs formally marketed is considerably below that of informal markets. The formal markets carry products such as crafts, honey, gums, resins, and also a few wild foods and medicines. The formalization of the marketing of the other NTFPs is constrained by infrastructure, and it suffers from quality that is variable and products that are availabile only in small quantities.

Prejudices and problems

There are a number of constraints to the marketing of NTFPs. Urban populations have regarded it as a backward step to eat wild foods. In rural areas, people will eat wild foods only in times of hardship or drought, or consider them as children's food. Fortunately, there are indications that these prejudices are changing. For example, in Botswana 20 years ago there was a strong resistance to selling wild foods in Gaborone, the capital. Today, many people are more open to buying wild foods on the street and do not feel embarrassed about it.

The situation is quite different in the townships of South Africa, where people have lived for several generations with little contact with the countryside. A market survey (Taylor 1983) revealed that in these townships there is a very substantial demand for traditional wild foods. Several people commented that the white man's food makes them `weak' and they wanted their traditional foods instead. A marketing consultancy firm that specializes in the needs of these townships has strongly recommended up-market packaging and presentation of indigenous foods, as the market is becoming very discerning.

It is generally considered that most indigenous fruits in southern Africa will have virtually no market outside Africa unless they first are processed into jams, juices or dried fruit products. This is because they generally have very little flesh, and the flesh there is may be difficult to get off the kernel (e.g., Sclerocarya birrea (A. Rich.) Hochst.) or difficult to chew (e.g., Azanza garckeana (F. Hoffm.) Exell & Hillcoat). These attitudes are also changing as the power of domestication is realized.

Domestication of NTFPs

The domestication of natural resources involves a move from gathering in the wild on communally owned land to the deliberate cultivation of NTFPs on tenured farm land. The domestication of a chosen species then involves genetic selection and the management of varieties or cultivars. Through selection, yield and quality are improved so that the price paid for the product increases. Profits from these improved cultivars growing under personal control are the incentive to plant and manage the resource sustainability.

There are however several constraints to domestication and the formal development of markets for NTFPs; these include:

One group of NTFPs with commercial potential is the essential oils. Here again, the potential for the exploration of essential oils from wild plants is severely restricted, as there are several problems that make the essential oil industry wary of getting involved. For example, the quality of some oils can vary from region to region. For example, when Israel tried to break into the geranium oil industry, it obtained its germplasm from France, which is a top producer. However, the Israeli oils were found not to be acceptable to the market until a special niche was created for it. As with other NTFPs, essential oils also suffer from supply problems.

One success story, however, comes from South Africa, where it was found that Tagetes minuta oil had characteristics that the market needed, although continuity of supply was difficult to guarantee. The answer was to cultivate it. Now, many ex-maize farmers in marginal areas of South Africa and Zimbabwe prefer to grow Tagetes rather than more ordinary crops, as they are more likely to get a harvest.

Risks and dangers

There are many potential risks and dangers in the commercial exploitation of NTFPs. The first is that of overexploitation. This is a result of everyone getting on the bandwagon to harvest as much as they can, as quickly as they can, before anyone else. Generally any traditional (or government) management controls are ignored in this rush to exploit the resource. Within a relatively short time, the resource is either wiped out or placed under severe pressure. For example, the very successful basket industry in Ngamiland, Botswana, has threatened the palm Hyhpaene benguellensis var. ventricosa (Kirk) Furtado, and the woodcarving industry in eastern Africa has all but wiped out the black hardwoods.

The second risk is that the gatherers put themselves at risk, by exploiting the resource on which they are dependent. This non-sustainable exploitation arises because of the harvesters' desire for cash. Both of these situations arise from the lack of ownership of the resource by the exploiting community. Access to cash is one of the major constraints in the lives of most people, so when an opportunity arises, they exploit it to the full. The commercialization of NTFPs therefore has the potential to destroy natural resources and leave the most needy people worse off than ever before, unless it is carefully controlled. However, if means can be found to give people the ownership of the resources, then they are more likely to protect them, and exploit them sustainably. There are, however, many examples of projects which have tried to do this, and failed.

`Pie in the sky' planning seems to be a universal problem, particularly when NTFPs are involved. The main cause has been ignorance by development agencies: ignorance of the resource base, its size and its characteristics; ignorance of the rural people, their needs and aspirations and their traditional natural resource management practices; and, finally, ignorance of the market forces. But above all of these causes of failure, there is the crucial need for people to have ownership of the resource. Land, or at least tree, tenure is essential if tree crops are to be managed sustainably. Even then, much can go wrong and a holistic approach is needed to develop the right conditions to promote the domestication and commercialization of NTFPs. Part of the development of this holistic approach involves the creation of incentives for people to establish the trees and other plants. One of these incentives is cash -not handouts, but the opportunity for farmers to profit from growing the products themselves.

Managing the natural resources

Surveys need to be undertaken of all the renewable natural resources to which the people have access. These need to quantify both the resource base and its potential utilization. The surplus available for marketing can be calculated once the needs of local people, livestock and wildlife have been quantified. People within the community need to be trained in these procedures, as well as in the methodology to monitor the impact of utilizing the resources.

Part of this process involves the development of a policy for year-round use of a range of available resources of different species, so that income can be generated throughout the year. The NTFPs could include foods, medicines, gums, resins, essential oils, insects, dried florist materials, rawhide, leather, horn products. In addition, markets have to be researched, particularly for new products. This involves determining market demands, price fluctuations, and supply requirements and opportunities.

Developing a holistic approach

A holistic approach to the domestication and commercialization of NTFPs should involve the local community at grassroots level from the very beginning. Using participatory rural appraisal (PRA) techniques, communities can develop their own strategies to utilize and manage their renewable natural resources sustainably. The monitoring agency, be it an NGO or a government office, should be a facilitator and be as transparent as possible while providing the technical advice, training and other facilities.

Two approaches to the commercialization of NTFPs can be developed: (1) the sustainable management of the natural resource and (2) its domestication and cultivation. These are not mutually exclusive.

For the domestication and commercialization of NTFPs to be successful in the long run, it is essential that a holistic approach be taken. This is a long-term, slow process. There are no quick-fix solutions. It requires a multidisciplinary team, preferably by collaborating agencies, each having its own specialist inputs.

To maximize returns at the grassroots level, it is advisable to research the development of NTFPs so that they meet market needs and trends. The trap that many people fall into is that they think that when they develop a product, the market will be found for it. Sometimes that works, but very often it does not. Emphasis should, therefore, be on simple technologies such as the production of dried fruit rolls, which have a relatively long shelf life and do not spoil with handling, as does fresh fruit.

Product development is of particular importance to crafts that are based on NTFPs. To gain access to and maintain a foothold in the international craft market, it is essential to maintain product development and innovation. The craft market thrives on such stimulation-and so do crafts people, when they recognize the rewards.

Domestication of indigenous fruits at veld products research: a case study

Veld Products Research started its research in the domestication of indigenous fruit trees in 1989.

Identifying superior phenotypes

The identification of superior fruit trees in the wild is the starting point for the development of improved cultivars. The approach taken by Veld Products has been to initiate nationwide school competitions. School children know the best trees in their areas, the ones that produce the biggest and sweetest fruits. Attractive prizes have been offered to the individual children, and their schools, identifying the best individual trees. From this approach, 10 superior phenotypes of Sclerocarya birrea have so far been identified. In addition, some superior provenances have been identified with fruit weighing 2.5-3.3 times the average for S. birrea (30 g) in Botswana. Similarly, six superior phenotypes of Strychnos cocculoides have been identified with average fruit numbers of between 300 and 700 per plant. The competition for Vangueria infausta is still under way, but another five to six superior phenotypes are being added to the single superior provenance identified so far.

Propagation and growth

Research into propagation of indigenous fruit trees through seeds and vegetative material has been investigated for the past 5 years. Experiments with the following species have produced encouraging results, while there have been great difficulties in germinating and growing other species in the nursery.

Sclerocarya birrea (marula)

First fruiting: grafted 4 to 5 years, ungrafted 8-10 years

Yield in the wild: grafted 4 to 5 years, ungrafted 10 years

Fruit weight: average: 25 g each

superior phenotypes: 70-98 g each

Street value: 2 US cents each fresh = USD 700 per tree (theoretically)

In Botswana and South Africa (University of Pretoria) the best results have been obtained with seed germination and grafting of scions carried out in spring (September-October). Removal of the operculum has resulted in very high levels of germination of 200% or more, as the seeds have multiple embryos. Research has shown that removal of the operculum is not essential for successful germination, but it is very important to keep seeds dry during cold months and to germinate them when mean maximum temperatures are at least 21 o C. Keeping seeds in a dry condition in the cold season after fruit ripening is important to release them from dormancy. Moisture in winter causes seeds to develop deeper dormancy.

Mature scions grafted onto spring-sown seedling rootstocks have developed into plants that yielded first fruits in the 4th or 5th year after grafting. Plants from seedlings not grafted have been observed to take 8 to 10 years before first signs of flowering (Taylor et al. 1995).

In the field, growth rates of grafted trees improved greatly with increased moisture availability. Macro- and micro-catchments, constructed to harvest rainwater, improved tree growth by over 50%, compared with trees without catchments.

Attempts at propagation by cuttings have not succeeded either in the open or under 50% shade netting. However, a propagation box for cuttings (Leakey et al. 1990) has now been built and will be used to propagate this and other species. Propagation by truncheons have been successful, but as this method has no commercial application it has not been followed up.

Studies of the effects of pot size on seedling development have revealed that bigger pots give greater growth of both roots and shoots. Seedlings raised under 25% shade showed such good growth that within 12 months the seedlings were big enough for grafting. In the 1995 grafting session, 100% take was recorded on the seedlings that were raised under 25% shade. Seedlings raised under 50% and 100% shade were too thin or too short respectively.

VPR is carrying out field trials in three areas of Botswana to establish which provenances of Sclerocarya birrea will grow best in each area. Initial indications show that trees in Gabane (southern Botswana) are growing much better than those in Serowe (central Botswana). Reasons for differences in growth rates between the two sites were the differences in soil type and temperatures during winter months. Young trees are not frost resistant and they will die back to ground level and regrow in spring. Mature trees are frost resistant. The trees in Serowe are growing in `cotton soils', which are dry but can easily be waterlogged in rainy seasons. The third trial, near Maun in northern Botswana, is newly established and therefore no results are available.

Strychnos cocculoides

First fruit: 4 to 5 years (ungrafted)

Yield in the wild: 300 to 400 fruits

Fruit size: average 100 mm diameter

superior phenotypes: 150 mm diameter

Street value: 40 US cents each = USD 140 per tree

Propagation by seed has been successful; 80% germination has been recorded on seeds sown in summer in the propagation box. Seeds sown in winter took more than 9 weeks to germinate, while those sown in summer germinated within 3 weeks. Cuttings under 50% shade sprouted within 3 weeks, but no root development was observed.

Research into growth rates has shown difficulties. This species seems to be affected by mycorrhizal factors as well as shade. The symbiotic relationship between plant roots and certain species of mycorrhizae can enhance the plant's uptake of important nutrients, as well as make the plant more drought and disease tolerant (see Munyanziza, this volume). Collaborative research into mycorrhizae is being undertaken with the University of Pretoria.

In the field at Gabane, growth of this species has more than doubled in 13 months. In Zambia reports indicate that trees raised from seeds yielded fruits within 3 years of transplanting (C. Mwamba pers. comm. 1995). However, some of the trees at the Gabane have remained below average in height in the past 3 years and have not flowered. This varied response requires further investigation.

Strychnos cocculoides responds positively to inorganic fertilizers. In net-house experiments, seedlings treated with super phosphate and Nitrosol fertilizers doubled (760 cm) their heights within 3 months, while those untreated remained below 20 cm for 3 years.

Azanza garckeana (morojwa)

First fruits: 18 months (ungrafted)

Yields: 2000 fruits; fruit size: 30-40 mm diameter

Street value: 4 US cents each = USD 80 per tree

In Botswana, this is the only indigenous species that is semi-domesticated by local people, who grow the tree in their own yards. The species is drought tolerant and fast growing, reaching more than 2 m in one season. The species responds favourably to propagation by cuttings. This species has shown good germination throughout the year, good transplantation responses, and bears its first fruits in the second year. Five potential varieties have been identified.

Azanza garckeana cuttings responded favourably in the propagation box, where vegetative growth was observed within 3 weeks. However, no roots were observed after 3 months in the box. So far, rooting hormones (Seradix No. 2) do not seem to effectively induce rooting.

The tree sprouts quite easily. At the research site, trees over 3 m were cut back to 1 m and 0.5 m in November 1995, and they coppiced within 3 weeks. The new growth started to bear fruits within 3 months of sprouting on some varieties. Clearly, this species can be kept short to ease harvesting, as the tree can grow up to 10 metres tall, making fruit difficult to harvest. Fruiting takes place only on each season's new growth, so a pruning management regime should improve fruit yield. This has yet to be proven. In field trials, this species is one of the fastest growers. At Gabane, growth of over 2 m has been recorded within 10 months. Some varieties fruited within 12 months.

Vangueria infausta

First fruit: 8 months (ungrafted)

Yields: 1500 fruits ; fruit size: 25 to 150 mm diameter

Street value: 4 US cents each = USD 60 per tree

The domestication potential for this species is very good. Plants at the research site have been separated into four varieties on the basis of stem colour, leaf size, leaf hairiness and leaf shininess.

Germination is reportedly sporadic until the seeds are scarified or treated with hydrogen peroxide (H 2 O2 ) (Msenga and Maghembe 1989). At VPR, no difficulties in germination have been observed with seeds sown in the summer months; 70% germination has been recorded within 21 days of sowing in sandy beds.

Domestication of V. infausta faces two potential problems. First, drought or erratic rainfall causes fruit to abort, but supplementary irrigation can overcome this problem. The second problem is a mite that causes galls on the leaves. The mite spreads easily and quickly if the trees are grown at high density, and severe infection will probably affect production adversely.

Field performance in the trials has been very encouraging. Some trees bear as many as 400 fruits per tree on 2-year-old trees of about 1.3 m. In Malawi, spectacular growth and production were obtained within the same period (Maghembe 1995).

Multilocational trials

Three multilocational trials have been established between 1994 and 1996, each involving over 500 trees in total of Sclerocarya birrea, Strychnos cocculoides, Azanza garckeana andVangueria infausta. A further 23 similar trials are planned at sites around the country in 1996/97.

Agroforestry

In Botswana the official statistic for arable agriculture is that crops fail one year in three, because of poor or erratic rainfall. However, in Gabane, at the VPR site, the last good harvest was about 15 years ago. In areas like this, it has been realized that agroforestry could be the answer to food security. The trees would provide fruit in drought years, and perhaps also allow a crop of traditional cereals and pulses, even in poor rainfall years, when such crops usually fail in traditional agriculture.

In 1995, an agroforestry trial was established in a 6-year-old orchard of Sclerocarya birrea trees, which are in rows 15 m apart along the contour. The trees are 12 m apart. Inter-planted in the 12 m between the S. birrea are three 1-year-old trees planted at 3-m intervals. The centre trees are Strychnos cocculoides, while the two adjacent to the Sclerocarya birrea are Vangueria infausta. The latter species is a shrub often found growing in the wild under the canopies of S. birrea, which can be 30 m diameter when mature. Each of the trees have half-moon microcatchments of 1 m radius around the tree. They all have stone mulches. The slope is about 1:20, facing east. Contour bunds are placed at 6-m and 4-m spacings between the rows of fruit trees. The bunds are 50 cm wide, 20 cm high at the top of the crest, and about 60 m long. Short 50 cm bunds have been placed at 1-m intervals on the uphill side of the bunds to create catchments to hold the runoff. The area between the rows was cleared of weeds and smoothed to enhance water runoff.

Seeds of sorghum and cowpeas were hand planted at set spacings and in pure stands both on the bunds and in the 1 m x 50 cm water-holding area.

One contour bund was treated with water-absorbing, polymer crystals at the rate of 100 g per square meter and to a depth of 20 cm. These crystals can absorb water up to 500 times their weight. The objective of this experiment was to see what beneficial effects these may have on the harvest in a drought year.

Traditional watermelons were planted at 8-m intervals in the centre of the catchment areas. A control plot was ploughed and planted in the traditional manner. The 1995/96 rainy season has been the best in 20 years, resulting in good crop growth for all farmers. The harvest will start in about May 1996. It will require about 10 years of data before definite results can be obtained concerning the advantages of this dryland form of agroforestry.

Recommendation

Recognizing that most NTFP resources are common to all countries in eastern and southern Africa, it is recommended that ICRAF establish a network for NTFP and agroforestry research in the region to achieve the following:

to coordinate research so as to prevent unnecessary duplication

to encourage collaboration between research institutions within the region as well as with first world countries

to disseminate research findings to all interested bodies within the region as well as internationally

to establish standardized systems for (1) valuation of NTFPs to determine their contribution to national economies, thereby influencing government policies affecting NTFPs, (2) inventory techniques for NTFP resource bases

to identify centres of excellence within the region, which may be used as resource and training centres

to facilitate the sharing of genetic material between research institutions in the region

to publish a regular newsletter

Conclusion

Experience has shown that the commercial exploitation of NTFPs in the region invariably has led to the decline or extinction of the resource base. The answer in some situations would seem to be that a multidisciplinary approach is needed, coupled with full participatory planning by the communities involved, to help them to develop their own strategies to utilize and manage their NTFP resource base sustainably.

The domestication of indigenous fruit trees seems to hold great promise in arid and semi-arid areas. A collaborative research network in this whole field, coordinated by an agency like ICRAF, could make a significant contribution to ensuring greater success in achieving objectives.

References

Leakey R.R.B., Mesen J.F., Tchoundjeu Z., Longman K.A., Dick J.M.P., Newton A.C., Matin A., Grace J., Munro R.C. & Muthoka P. 1990. Low technology techniques for vegetative propagation of tropical trees. Commonwealth Forestry Review 69:247-257.

Maghembe J.A. 1995. Achievements in the establishment of indigenous fruit trees of the miombo woodlands of South Africa. SADC-ICRAF Agroforestry Project, Malawi.

Msanga H.P. & Maghembe J.A. 1989. Physical scarification and hydrogen peroxide treatments improve germination of Vangueria infausta seed. Forest Ecology and Management Journal 28:301-308.

Taylor F.W. 1983. The potential for commercial utilization of veld products in Botswana, vol. 1.

Taylor F.W., Butterworth K.J. & Matoke S.M. 1995. The importance of indigenous fruit trees in semi-arid areas of southern and eastern Africa. African Academy of Sciences Second Roundtable Discussion on Non-Wood/Timber Products, Pretoria, South Africa.

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Plate 10. Fruits of Uapaca kirkiana in a Mutare market, Botswana. (photo: F. Taylor)

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Plate 11. Genetic variation in size of fruit from trees in the wild. The small one is an average-sized Sclerocarya caffra sub. spp. birrea fruit, while the larger one is from a tree in Mochudi, southeast Botswana (25gm:96gm). (photo: F. Taylor)

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Plate 12. Vangueria infausta producing 120 fruits at 20 months. This tree is part of an agroforestry experiment. Veld Products Research research site, Gabane, Botswana. (photo: F. Taylor)

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Plate 13. An experimental orchard with Vangueria infausta and Sclerocarya caffra sub. spp. birrea. Note the micro catchments after a rainstorm. Veld Products Research research site, Gabane, Botswana. (photo: F. Taylor)

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