Product and Market Development for Sorghum and Millet in Southern Africa and Central America
El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, South Africa
Texas A&M University
This project is integrated with food science, plant improvement, and marketing projects in East Africa, West Africa and Central America to improve components of the supply chain, and develop competitive urban convenience foods and healthy food products from special sorghum, millet and other grains. Demand for sorghum use in foods as an extender of expensive wheat and maize products has risen dramatically in most areas, but especially in Central America. The CENTA program in Salvador has significantly expanded activities in milling and processing of sorghum for use in baked foods as complete or partial substitutes for wheat, rice and maize flours. Several workshops to educate and provide information to scientists, PVO, NGO’s and private industry will be conducted by the CENTA Food Technology Laboratory/INTSORMIL. These will focus on use of small Omega VI grinders for preparation of sorghum flour, meal and other products. The feasibility of manufacturing these grinders in Salvador will be presented by CITI personnel. Sorghum is used in a wide array of processed products with excellent results. Similar activities are ongoing in Southern Africa. Special sorghums with high levels of antioxidants, unique flavanoids and condensed tannins that slow digestion are being developed and incorporated into healthy foods. These traits are incorporated into improved sorghum types by breeders. The effect of environments on levels of these major components is being evaluated. These sorghums have anti-inflammatory, anticancer and general potential for super health foods. Tannin sorghums have significant potential to prevent Type 2 diabetes. Development of these sorghums will lead to unique markets that are profitable. Sorghum flours useful in production of gluten-free foods will be developed.
1. Facilitate the growth of the rapidly expanding markets for sorghum and millet;2. Improve the food and nutritional quality of sorghum to enhance marketability and consumer health;3. Develop new, novel cultivars collaboratively with plant breeders to improve the food and nutritional quality of sorghum;4. Contribute to host-country institutional human capital development through short-term and long-term educational opportunities. Non-degree (short-term) training will include research methodology and conferences or hands-on training workshops; degree (long-term) training includes MS and PhD programs;5. Provide practical technical assistance and information on supply chain management, processingtechnologies and related matters.