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Elevating levels of nutrition and the standards of living of the people of Africa requires a combination of key initiatives including agricultural development, strengthening of food systems, social and economic progress and nutrition, health and education programmes. This resource book will assist teachers in agricultural institutions to explain why these factors are important and how they are related to each other. It focuses specifically on ways to incorporate food and nutrition topics into agricultural training programmes.

The need for a comprehensive source of resource materials based on African food systems has long been recognized. To address this need, the FAO Food and Nutrition Division has prepared this text. The book is a rich source of practical information drawn from the scientific literature, nutrition databases and field experiences from Africa.

Many individuals have made contributions to this text. The Food and Nutrition Division would like to acknowledge the important contribution of Dr Joyce Redhead, who compiled the book's wealth of information, drawing from her years of teaching in Africa. We also thank Professor Ruth Oniang'o of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, who acted as technical editor. Appreciation is also expressed for the valuable comments and suggestions made by the technical staff of FAO in the Agriculture, sustainable Development, and Economic and Social Departments and the special Action Programme for the Prevention of Food Losses.

Teachers of agriculture should find this resource book useful in creating effective and innovative training programmes. We are confident that the training activities they develop will enable those working in rural development and agriculture to contribute to long-term improvements in the food and nutritional situation of Africa.

John R. Lupien


FAO Food and Nutrition Division

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