Increasing Utilization of Cowpeas to Promote Health and Food Security in Kenya


A.K. Faraj; P.C. Tuitoek; J.M. Awika; A. Nderitu; D. Macharia; R.W. Kuruma

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Not Available

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Place of Publication:
Kigali, Rwanda


A poster presented at the 2012 Global Pulse Researchers Meeting, Kigali, Rwanda- “Transforming Grain-Legume Systems to Enhance Nutrition and Livelihoods”. Abstract: Cowpea is grown in Kenya both as a dry grain pulse and as a vegetable. As a dry grain pulse it is grown mainly in the dry marginal rainfall areas. These are areas that also frequently experience high levels of malnutrition and food insecurity. The average yield is about 0.5 ton/ha, while potential yield is 2.5 ton/ha. Low yield and limited market for the cowpea grain are therefore among the constraints for the uptake of cowpea by farmers. This project aims to identify high yielding lines with high phytochemical Content. The Government of Kenya through the Ministry of Agriculture is making effort to increase production and consumption of cowpea, while the Ministry of Education is trying to incorporate cowpea into their school feeding programme to improve on nutrition security and as a potential to complement beans as a source of protein. Four Kenyan cowpea varieties; Kenya Kunde (KK), Katumani 271 (KVU 271), Katumani 419 (KVU 419) and Machakos 66 (M66) were analysed for phenolic Content and antioxidant activity. The phenolic Contents ranged from 19.3 to 22.4 mg/g sample (dry weight). Antioxidant activity ranged from 272 to 312

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