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Impacts of Climate Change on Food Availability: Non-Timber Forest Products

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Abstract

Across the developing world, wild foods hunted or gathered from forests and other natural or modified ecosystems are vital for supplementing agricultural production by contributing to improved food availability and quality. These supplementary and alternative sources of food, often referred to as non-timber forest products (NTFPs), are especially crucial in years of crop failure – usually the result of extreme climatic events (droughts and floods), disease and pest outbreaks and other natural disasters. Trade in a wide range of NTFPs can provide a source of income that allows the purchase of food for both dietary diversification and to supplement calorie intake in periods of shortage, indirectly contributing to food security. Such increased consumption and use of NTFPs in times of stress can be viewed as an effective autonomous coping mechanism for dealing with threats to food security and is likely to expand under predicted climate change. Yet, we know little about how climate change, interacting with other drivers of change, will impact the world’s forests and woodlands and, more particularly, the range of products that people rely on. Limited research has been undertaken to consider how changes in climate may affect the distribution, productivity or availability of the wild species that people use for food and other purposes. More research is required at the interface between food security and the ecosystem services provided forests, woodlands and associated ecosystems, and the linkages to agriculture and climate change. It is necessary to look beyond the farm and conventional crops to the wide variety of foods people obtain from their environment.

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... Plants provide food, medicine, construction material, artistic material, cosmetic, fuel wood, and remain an important source of income for the rural community [1][2][3][4]. In developing countries, wild foods gathered from the forest and other natural or modified landscapes especially in farmlands are vital in supplementing agricultural production by contributing to improved food availability and quality [1,2]. ...
... Plants provide food, medicine, construction material, artistic material, cosmetic, fuel wood, and remain an important source of income for the rural community [1][2][3][4]. In developing countries, wild foods gathered from the forest and other natural or modified landscapes especially in farmlands are vital in supplementing agricultural production by contributing to improved food availability and quality [1,2]. The farming systems in the Sahel which combine trees, crops and livestock reflect strategies developed by the farmers for generations to reduce their vulnerability to risks related to climate [5,6] and soil degradation. ...
... [15] recognized NTFPs to include all biological materials other than timber extracted from wooded systems for livelihood benefits. These NTFPs are crucial especially in years of crop failure usually as a result of extreme climate events (droughts and floods), disease, pest outbreaks and other natural disasters [1,3,4]. [16] adds that NTFPs provide 'a safety net', a sort of green social security to billions of people in the form of low cost building materials, income, food supplements and traditional medicines. ...
... circumstances [23] as well as during periods of crop scarcity [24], and in rural [9] as well as urban contexts [25]. Wild foods need not be procured from forests alone, but also from managed landscapes like fallows and agroforestry systems, where they supplement and diversify food production and income, and enhance ecosystem services and climate resilience [19,26,27]. ...
... The remainder (n = 36) of the descriptive articles surveyed and inventoried the available diversity of WEF species within landscapes ranging from forest communities and small islands to provincial and national levels. About a third (n = 27) of the descriptive articles (27) reviewed the different aspects of a single species over large regions. For example, fruit-bearing palms are important multifunctional species in the Amazon, used in construction of walls and roofs, making of beverages and bags, and breeding of edible insects [58], while Ficus spp. ...
Article
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Wild edible fruits (WEFs) are among the most widely used non-timber forest products (NTFPs), and important sources of nutrition, medicine, and income for their users. In addition to their use as food, WEF species may also yield fiber, fuel, and a range of processed products. Besides forests, WEF species also thrive in diverse environments, such as agroforestry and urban landscapes, deserts, fallows, natural lands, and plantations. Given the multifunctional, ubiquitous nature of WEFs, we conducted a systematic review on the literature specific to WEFs and highlighted links between different domains of the wider knowledge on NTFPs. We found that literature specific to WEFs was limited, and a majority of it reported ethnobotanical and taxonomic descriptions, with relatively few studies on landscape ecology, economics, and conservation of WEFs. Our review identifies priorities and emerging avenues for research and policymaking to promote sustainable WEF management and use, and subsequent biodiversity and habitat conservation. In particular, we recommend that ecosystem services, economic incentives, market innovations, and stakeholder synergies are incorporated into WEF conservation strategies.
... For example, early estimates have suggested that one-quarter of the world's poor and up to 1.6 billion people worldwide are directly or indirectly dependent on forests for their livelihoods (Dubois 2003). Approximately 240 million people live in forested areas, constituting 18.5% of the 1.3 billion people living on environmentally fragile lands (Sunderlin et al. 2005), and around 1 billion rely on wild foods to supplement their diets (Shackleton 2014). Eighty percent of households in lower-income countries are reported to use forest products on a daily basis, and three-quarters of poor people living in rural areas depend on forests for subsistence (IFAD 2004, Tieguhong & Nkamgnia 2012. ...
... Climate change will likely increase these risks and affect fish stocks directly. Overall, there is insufficient understanding of how changes in climate may affect the distribution, productivity, and availability of wild resources collected by rural households (Islam et al. 2014, Shackleton 2014. ...
Article
The natural resource base, terrestrial and marine, provides rural households in low-income countries with income, food, shelter, and medicines, which are variously gathered and hunted in common lands and waters. These resources may be actively managed, either by the government or local community; or they may be de facto open access, with little effort by governments to prevent what may be de jure illegal extraction. This review appraises the literature that encompasses the direct value of wild resources to rural households, the extent to which these resources mitigate poverty and inequality, and the importance of the institutional context. More recent literature increasingly addresses competing demands on the resource base, which both supports nearby livelihoods and enhances ecosystem services such as biodiversity; and the extent to which initiatives such as community-based payments for ecosystem services change how people interact with the resource base.
... Few studies have assessed the impacts of climate change on NTFPs. Rather, NTFP studies have primarily focused on wild edible foods and medicinal plants (Shackleton 2014;Maikhuri et al. 2018) and highlighting the range of ecosystem services provided by NTFPs. Our study documents the full range of NTFP ecosystem services including fuelwood, fodder, bamboo products, fibres, ornamental plants, agricultural tools, and ritual products and adds to current understanding of the impacts of climate change on NTFP ecosystem services. ...
Article
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Non-timber forest products (NTFPs) are some of nature’s most important contributions to people in mountain regions and their provision is increasingly affected by climate change. Here, we identify the types of NTFPs and their contributions to people in the mountain communities of the Upper Madi Watershed of Nepal and describe how these are being impacted by climate change. We used a field-based household survey supplemented with key informant interviews to collect quantitative and qualitative data on their use of NTFPs and perceptions of recent climate change impacts. Our results show that mountain communities accrue multiple benefits from NTFPs including provisioning services (fuelwood, food, fodder, bamboo products, fiber, agricultural tools, and medicines) and cultural services (ornaments, and ritual products). Most NTFPs are used for subsistence but some also have market value. Locals perceived climate change to be impacting NTFPs and their benefits to people, in particular via increases in extreme events such as hailstorms and pest plant invasion. Understanding the contributions of NTFPs to people and the impacts of climate change is crucial for supporting policymakers, stakeholders, and practitioners in designing and implementing adaptation strategies for the continued supply, protection, and management of NTFPs in mountain communities.
... Besides their broad ecological range as a group, some WEFs are particularly resilient to extreme climatic conditions (Saied et al. 2008;Debela et al. 2012). In the face of rapid global environmental change, WEF species are an important genetic resource to conserve and develop as a response to biodiversity loss, climate uncertainty, and food insecurity (Mbow et al. 2014;Shackleton 2014;Vira et al. 2015). ...
Article
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Wild edible fruits (WEFs) are important non-timber forest products (NTFP) that are commonly grouped with other wild foods or NTFPs in general. We hypothesize that WEFs, other wild foods, and non-food NTFPs contribute in different ways to household economies. Using data collected through a survey of 503 households in South Africa, we describe patterns of use of WEFs across socioeconomic and geographical gradients and compare them to the patterns of use of other wild foods and non-food NTFPs. WEFs were used by one-fifth of all sampled households, independent of economic and urbanisation gradients and were grown in or collected mostly from surrounding areas. More households, usually in rural areas, used other wild foods and non-food NTFPs, which were often purchased from other collectors. We suggest improving access to WEFs through planting to extend their nutritional, medicinal, cultural, and livelihood value to the public.
... Some case studies do exist, providing a glimpse into the different factors influencing the proportion of forest generated income spent on food. Studies suggest that income from NTFPs is used to purchase food for dietary diversification and a supplement for wild food and crops during times of shortage [66,67]. Furthermore, a study from Sri Lanka highlights the importance of forest income for purchasing food when rights and access to wild foods and NTFPs change [68]. ...
Article
Forests are the largest source of terrestrial biodiversity and contain over half of the world's terrestrial plant and animal species. In addition to the multitude of species supported by forest systems, forests are also responsible for life-sustaining ecological processes such as nutrient cycling and water regulation. As a rich source of plants, animals, soil, and water, the connection between forests and food seems undeniable. However, until recently, this relationship has been poorly understood. In this review, we explore three main pathways in which forests contribute to food security and nutrition. These include: (1) a direct consumption pathway, (2) an income pathway and (3) an agroecological pathway. We find the following: (1) forests contribute directly to people's diets through the harvest of bushmeat, wild fruits and other forest-sourced foods; (2) the sale of non-timber forest products contribute to people's income, enabling the purchase of a diversity of food items from markets; and finally (3) forests and trees support diverse crop and livestock production through an array of ecosystem services such as pollination, soil fertility and water and climate regulation. Our findings shed light on the vital role that forests play in food security and we conclude that further research is needed to understand the interactions between the ecological, socioeconomic and cultural dimensions of forests and diets.
... Globally, it is estimated that up to 1.6 billion people rely either directly or indirectly on forest resources for their livelihoods (Dubois, 2003). Of this, about 1 billion rely on wild foods to supplement their diets (Shackleton, 2014cited in Robinson, 2016. It is also estimated that about eighty percent of households in low income countries use forest products on a daily basis while three quarters of the rural poor rely on forests for their daily subsistence (Tieguhong & Nkamgnia, 2012cited in Robinson, 2016. ...
Article
This paper examines whether offering landless forest-adjacent communities options to grow appropriate food crops inside forest reserves during early stages of reforestation programmes increases incomes of low-income households and conserve forests. We consider the forest cover and household welfare impacts of a unique incentive scheme in Kenya known as the Plantation Establishment and Livelihood Improvement Scheme (PELIS). PELIS seeks to deepen community participation in forestry, and improve the livelihoods of adjacent communities. Using cross sectional data collected from 22 Community Forest Associations and 406 households, we use propensity score matching methods to evaluate the mean impact of the scheme on forest cover and household welfare. We also assess the heterogeneous impacts of the scheme on household welfare using an endogenous quantile treatment effects model. The results show that on average, PELIS has a significant and positive impact on the welfare of participating households (estimated between 15.09% and 28.14%) and on forest cover (between 5.53% and 7.94%). However, the scheme cannot be defended on equity grounds as it has inequitable distributional impacts on household welfare. The scheme raises welfare of groups other than the poorest and marginalized sections of the community. Our observations from the field blame elite capture for this outcome.
... Across the developing world, wild foods hunted or gathered from forests and other natural or modified ecosystems are vital for supplementing agricultural production by contributing to improved food availability and, more especially, food quality (Shackleton 2014). Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) are commonly understood as all the biological material (other than industrial round wood) available in natural ecosystems or managed plantation; such as fuel wood, fodder, food sources, medicinal plants and craft raw material (Ashok et Pankal 2010). ...
Article
Non-timber forest products (NTFPs) and some forest tree species are an important source of livelihood to communities. Unfortunately, their potential and uses are much unknown by the population or organization responsible for conservation. It is for this reason that this study was carried out in the village of Minko’o to assess this potential, and to show their importance. A socio-economic survey was carried out in the village and GPS coordinates of the identified NTFPs and forest trees was recorded from the farms/plantations and forest visited. A total of 20 households were surveyed in order to identify the different NTFPs and their utility for the population. Our findings revealed that 50% of the harvest of NTFPs and forest species is done by picking and 45% by collection. Some NTFPs and forest products were known and used by the people. Some of these resources were not known and therefore under exploited. It is the case of Cola (Cola nitida), Soursop (Persea muricata), Akom (Terminalia superba), Mfo (Enantia Chlorantha), Kassimang (Spondias purpurea). Most of NTFPs were grown by the populations and the preferred NTFP was the avocado tree. The forest tree species are mainly used for medicinal purposes. Other trees were used for construction.
... Examples of biotic and abiotic products collected from forests and other natural and modified areas in the landscape include fruits, leafy vegetables, woody foliage, roots and tubers, wild cereals and grains, seeds; many of these products may be processed into food substances such as crafts, alcohol (Cavendish 2000, Shackleton et al. 2002, Shackleton and Gumbo 2010. Given the realisation of the importance of these products for rural livelihoods, they have received increased research attention over the last decade and have been extensively studied both locally in South Africa (Shackleton et al. 2002, Paumgarten 2005, Shackleton and Shackleton 2006, Shackleton 2014, Adam and Shackleton 2016, Baiyegunhi and Oppong 2016 and ...
Thesis
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The world is becoming increasingly complex and uncertain due to increasing levels of social- ecological change. Rural communities in sub-Saharan Africa are faced with multiple interconnected challenges such as population growth, environmental change, economic recession and climatic changes, amongst others. Such challenges can play a key role in determining vulnerability and food security, particularly for natural resource product- dependent societies that have limited livelihood sources. Studies that consider understanding how society and ecosystems simultaneously interact and respond to new and exacerbated drivers are increasingly needed. Therefore, this study was conducted in Fairbairn village, Eastern Cape, South Africa with the purpose of exploring multi-scale historical processes and current related trends in livelihood and environmental change, and the implications for future trajectories under a changing climate. This study applied social-ecological thinking and several conceptual approaches were combined to provide a lens for exploring the changes taking place. These included, inter alia, complexity theory, social-ecological systems, the sustainable livelihoods approach and the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services framework and principles. The study employed a mixed method approach to gather data, which included a household survey, aerial photography, historical records as well as Participatory Learning and Action, focus group discussions, and Participatory Scenario techniques. Quantitative data were analysed using Excel and Statistica version 13, whilst coding was used for thematic analysis of qualitative data. The main objective of this study was to explore multi-scale historical processes and current related trends of livelihood and environmental change, and the implications of these for future trajectories under a changing climate. Livelihood and landscape changes in Fairbairn village are embedded within a history of direct state intervention and more recently, improvements in basic service delivery. The findings show that natural resource products still form an important part of people’s livelihoods despite many other changes over the last fifteen years. A high proportion of households continue to utilise different products to meet household needs. The most widely used products are fuelwood, wild herbs and wild fruits. More so, my results revealed a significant increase in the number of people commercialising natural resource products over the past fifteen years. Furthermore, I found that rural livelihoods in Fairbairn are heavily dependent on external income and consumption and have become increasingly divorced from local production patterns. My results depict a steady decline of cultivated fields with a corresponding increase of home gardens since the 1960s. Therefore, the results demonstrate that current livelihood strategies are an expression of historical processes interacting with current contextual complexities. Given the complex and multidimensional issues at play in Fairbairn, the study highlights that there is no straightforward answer regarding future livelihood strategies. However, participatory scenario deliberations revealed that the youth were much more open to diversified and even very different forms of livelihood strategies in the future, whilst community leaders and elders remained firmly attached to farming activities. Understanding the diversity of past livelihood changes, together with current trends, can help to better contextualise future livelihood trajectories and this can therefore help rural communities identify and avoid undesirable futures under a changing climate.
... climate (Udeagha, 2015;Shackleton, 2014 , 2005) and could be used for pastries (Keay, 1989), weaning foods, breakfasts cereals (Okafor, 1990;Appiah et al., 2011), alcohol (Okafor, 1990), wood production (Agbogidi and Onomeregor, 2008;WAC, 2004;Orwa et al., 2009, Jean, 2015,beverages (Sunday et al., 2009;Orwa et al., 2009, Nwabueze andUchendu, 2011) and the tree has medicinal and environmental value (Oorts et al., 2003;Nuga and Ofodile, 2010;Orwa et al., 2009, Irvine, 1981, PARDI, 2011 Meregini, 2005) and this is quite worrisome (Nuga and Ofodile, 2010). ...
Article
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Home gardens provide perspective for conservation of plant genetic resources while contributing to improving livelihoods. The Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) the conserve are gathered for household consumption and commercial uses; they have formed an inherent part of rural economy for millennia and equally serve as safety net during periods of adverse environmental changes such as famine due to crop failure. Accordingly, the study was carried out to examine the level of income generation, processing, distribution of sales as well as the importance of Treculia africana to food security in Southeastern, Nigeria in 2015. The study was conducted in Okigwe agricultural zone, Imo State, Nigeria. A multi-stage sampling technique was employed for this study. Data collected was analysed using descriptive statistic. The results revealed that majority of the respondents were female (53.70%) and were married (84.40%). The source of the product was mainly from the home gardens (76.70%) and the reason for harvesting was for income generation and subsistence use (household consumption) (77.78%).The product was best harvested during rainy season (68.00%) when fruits are most abundant (48.90%). Majority of respondents (57.80%) sold Treculia africana kernel in cigarette cup ranging from ₦110−₦160 while the weekly income was between ₦2500−₦4500. The major problem affecting price rate of Traculia fruits and kernels was labour (25.20%), transportation (16.90%) and local tax (22.20%). It is therefore, recommended that appropriate conservation measures be put in place using sustainable policy framework that would enhance its in situ and ex situ conservation and equally ensure it protracted use in order to increase its abundance and availability.
... For instance, avoiding deforestation is a very important strategy to mitigate and adapt to climate change, since in adaptation terms it can also provide other resources (e.g., bush foods, medicinal plants) to livestock keepers, which can buffer climate variations via diversification of income and obtaining other food sources. 158,159 These land management strategies are mainly managerial and technological and are often intended to improve the efficiency of livestock systems in a form of sustainable intensification. Strategies linked to sustainable intensification that consider all the other objectives (ethical, health, development, social justice, including concerns around vulnerability and social equity, biodiversity and land use, animal welfare, human nutrition and rural economies 139,160 ) can offer promising outcomes in both adaptation and mitigation terms. ...
Article
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Livestock play a key role in the climate change debate. As with crop-based agriculture, the sector is both a net greenhouse gas emitter and vulnerable to climate change. At the same time, it is an essential food source for millions of people worldwide, with other functions apart from food security such as savings and insurance. By comparison with crop-based agriculture, the interactions of livestock and climate change have been much less studied. The debate around livestock is confusing due to the coexistence of multiple livestock farming systems with differing functions for humans, greenhouse gas (GHG) emission profiles and different characteristics and boundary issues in their measurement, which are often pooled together. Consequently, the diversity of livestock farming systems and their functions to human systems are poorly represented and the role of the livestock sector in the climate change debate has not been adequately addressed. In this article, building upon the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report (IPCC 5AR) findings, we review recent literature on livestock and climate change so as better to include this diversity in the adaptation and mitigation debate around livestock systems. For comparative purposes we use the same categories of managerial, technical, behavioral and policy-related action to organize both mitigation and adaptation options. We conclude that different livestock systems provide different functions to different human systems and require different strategies, so they cannot readily be pooled together. We also observe that, for the different livestock systems, several win-win strategies exist that effectively tackle both mitigation and adaptation options as well as food security. For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.
... Others, for local and regional trade, are managed within home gardens, fallows, and forests. Indigenous management systems frequently optimize diversity, embodying an essential adaptation strategy, the significance of which will increase with resource scarcity and climate variability (Shackleton 2014). ...
Chapter
Globally, 1.5 billion people use or trade non-timber forest products (NTFPs) with the majority of NTFP use and trade occurring at local and regional scales, generally invisible to researchers and policy makers. NTFPs cannot be measured by monetary estimations alone, as they have significant subsistence and sociocultural importance and are commonly one part of multifaceted, adaptive livelihood strategies. In spite of low-cost substitutes, both rural and urban people continue to use select forest resources for medicine, crafts, rituals, and food. And as drought, disease, famine, and conflict escalate globally, growing numbers of displaced and marginalized people depend upon forest resources for survival. In general, forests managed for timber and NTFPs retain more biodiversity and resilience than forest plantations or forests managed for industrial timber. Forests that harbor NTFPs also protect ecosystem services such as hydrological functions and soil retention and act as a buffer against climate variability. Land use change through logging, fire, and agribusiness is contributing to the degradation of forests, resulting in declining access to NTFPs for local communities. Land stewards can mitigate detrimental impacts to NTFPs by employing multiple-use management practices that emphasize ecosystem services and community needs in addition to traditional forestry outputs (timber and non-timber). For multiple-use forestry to be applied broadly, forest policies need to be cross-sectoral and scale sensitive to lessen regulatory obstacles for small holders and for common pool/property systems. In addition, forestry training needs to include a stronger social focus and improved understanding of the ecology, use, and societal and ecosystem service values of NTFPs.
... Others, for local and regional trade, are managed within home gardens, fallows, and forests. Indigenous management systems frequently optimize diversity, embodying an essential adaptation strategy, the significance of which will increase with resource scarcity and climate variability (Shackleton 2014). ...
Chapter
Full-text available
Globally, 1.5 billion people use or trade non-timber forest products (NTFPs) with the majority of NTFP use and trade occurring at local and regional scales, generally invisible to researchers and policy makers. NTFPs cannot be measured by monetary estimations alone, as they have significant subsistence and sociocultural importance and are commonly one part of multifaceted, adaptive livelihood strategies. In spite of low-cost substitutes, both rural and urban people continue to use select forest resources for medicine, crafts, rituals, and food. And as drought, disease, famine, and conflict escalate globally, growing numbers of displaced and marginalized people depend upon forest resources for survival. In general, forests managed for timber and NTFPs retain more biodiversity and resilience than forest plantations or forests managed for industrial timber. Forests that harbor NTFPs also protect ecosystem services such as hydrological functions and soil retention and act as a buffer against climate variability. Land use change through logging, fire, and agribusiness is contributing to the degradation of forests, resulting in declining access to NTFPs for local communities. Land stewards can mitigate detrimental impacts to NTFPs by employing multiple-use management practices that emphasize ecosystem services and community needs in addition to traditional forestry outputs (timber and non-timber). For multiple-use forestry to be applied broadly, forest policies need to be cross-sectoral and scale sensitive to lessen regulatory obstacles for small holders and for common pool/property systems. In addition, forestry training needs to include a stronger social focus and improved understanding of the ecology, use, and societal and ecosystem service values of NTFPs.
... Timber and non-timber forest products (e.g., firewood, charcoal, fruit, mushrooms, roots, honey, and medicinal plants) are important commodities to be sold or traded, as well as consumed (Dawson et al., 2014a). Forest products are used as coping mechanisms, such as "famine foods" when crops fail (Dewees, 2013;Shackleton, 2014;Vira et al., 2015) and as adaptive strategies, anticipating stresses such as climate variability (Alfaro et al., 2014;Graudel et al., 2014;Pramova et al., 2012). The short-term costs of restoration are frequently perceived to outweigh the benefits (which may be longer-term). ...
Chapter
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Chapter
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As with all crops, indigenous or exotic, in Africa there are many different production systems. The main differentiating attributes include location, size, proximity to homestead, commercial or subsistence, nature and quantity of inputs, and whether the crops are planted in mixed or pure stands (see Chapter 1). Different combinations of these attributes result in a wide array of production systems, both within countries and between them. For example, Table 5.1 shows considerable regional differences in AIV production systems between two cities in Uganda. In comparison, in northern Tanzania, approximately one third of AIVs are intercropped, while two-thirds are cultivated in pure stands, with 67 per cent of all plots using sowing rather than broadcasting (Weinberger and Msuya, 2004). Intercropping of AIVs with field crops such as maize, cassava and sugar cane has multiple uses. The ever-changing climatic situation globally has left Africa, in particular, very vulnerable to the unpredictability of weather. Indigenous crops are better placed to withstand drastic changes in natural systems. Intercropping of adaptable species could be used by farmers as an insurance against crop failure. The most commercially viable crops are also produced in farms as opposed to kitchen gardens. Even within urban areas, AIV production systems are not uniform. Gockowski et al (2003) identified three distinctive styles of production across the urban/peri-urban landscape in Yaoundé: 1 an intensive urban (IU) system located within the city limits, characterized by mono-cropping, often on raised beds in inland valleys using high levels of inputs; 2 a semi-intensive peri-urban (SIPU) style extending approximately 30km outside the city limits that also mono-crops on raised beds in inland valleys but using fewer inputs than intensive urban producers; and 3 an extensive peri-urban (EPU) style within an approximate radius of 30km of the city limits that produces AIVs in mixed associations with staple crops and no purchased inputs. In rural areas, subsistence AIV cultivation generally follows an extensive cropping pattern in association with staples or tree crops. AIVs are planted between and around other staple crops such as maize, cassava, etc. In rural areas, production and marketing is undertaken mainly by women. However, as soon as cash generation potential of the crop increases, men become more involved (Jansen van Rensburg et al, 2007) (as is the case with many other natural resources). This may be one of the reasons why more men are involved in production activities in urban and peri-urban areas, while marketing is still left to women. In addition, producers are younger in urban areas, where commercial production is more labour intensive and often necessitates hired labour, which is mainly offered by young men. Some young people who migrated from rural and resource-poor regions in search of improved living standards convert to the production of AIVs when they are unable to secure the jobs they hoped for, which provides them with a source of income and food for subsistence. The further away one moves from the urban centre, women increasingly engage in production activities, while men are called upon for tasks that require greater physical strength. Activities such as ploughing, irrigation, fertilizer and pesticide application have always been considered men’s activities, while sowing, harvesting and trading are considered women’s activities. Although there are a great variety of production systems, the two most common ones, typically differentiated by size and location, are arable fields and home gardens. There are many variations of these.
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Tropical moist forests in Africa are concentrated in the Congo Basin. A variety of animals in these forests, in particular mammals, are hunted for their meat, termed bushmeat. This paper investigates current and future trends of bushmeat protein, and non-bushmeat protein supply, for inhabitants of the main Congo Basin countries. Since most bushmeat is derived from forest mammals, published extraction (E) and production (P) estimates of mammal populations were used to calculate the per person protein supplied by these. Current bushmeat protein supply may range from 30 g person1 in the Democratic Republic of Congo, to 180 g person1 in Gabon. Future bushmeat protein supplies were predicted for the next 50 years by employing current E:P ratios, and controlling for known deforestation and population growth rates. At current exploitation rates, bushmeat protein supply would drop 81% in all countries in less than 50 years; only three countries would be able to maintain a protein supply above the recommended daily requirement of 52 g person1. However, if bushmeat harvests were reduced to a sustainable level, all countries except Gabon would be dramatically affected by the loss of wild protein supply. The dependence on bushmeat protein is emphasized by the fact that four out of the five countries studied do not produce sufficient amounts of non-bushmeat protein to feed their populations. These findings imply that a significant number of forest mammals could become extinct relatively soon, and that protein malnutrition is likely to increase dramatically if food security in the region is not promptly resolved.
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Nowadays, adaptation has become a key focus of the scientific and policy-making communities and is a major area of discussion in the multilateral climate change process. As climate change is projected to hit the poorest the hardest, it is especially important for developing countries to pay particular attention to the management of natural resources and agricultural activities. In most of these countries such as Cameroon, forest can play important role in achieving broader climate change adaptation goals. However, forest generally receives very little attention in national development programme and strategies such as policy dialogues on climate change and poverty reduction strategies. Using a qualitative approach to data collection through content analysis of relevant Cameroon policy documents, the integration of climate change adaptation was explored and the level of attention given to forests for adaptation analysed. Results indicate that, with the exception of the First National Communication to UNFCCC that focused mostly on mitigation and related issues, current policy documents in Cameroon are void of tangible reference to climate change, and hence failing in drawing the relevance of forest in sheltering populations from the many projected impacts of climate change. Policies related to forest rely on a generalized concept of sustainable forest management and do not identify the specific changes that need to be incorporated into management strategies and policies towards achieving adaptation. The strategies and recommendations made in those documents only serve to improve understanding of Cameroon natural resources and add resilience to the natural systems in coping with anthropogenic stresses. The paper draws attention to the need to address the constraints of lack of awareness and poor flow of information on the potentials of forests for climate change adaptation. It highlights the need for integrating forest for adaptation into national development programmes and strategies, and recommends a review of the existing environmental legislations and their implications on poverty reduction strategy and adaptation to climate change. KeywordsClimate change–Forests–Adaptation–National policies–Cameroon
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Like in many developing countries, forest and woodland resources contribute significantly to ensure the sustainability of livelihoods of rural people of Eritrea. However, the contribution made by forest and woodland resources has been masked due to the inability of the traditional economic valuation methods to reveal the hidden values of forest resources. As a result they do not reflect in GDP accounting, development planning and conservation policymaking. The underestimation of the importance of forest and woodland resources to the rural subsistence economy results in both market and policy failures. These in turn lead to escalated forest degradation, livelihood insecurity, value conflicts and ineffective conservation programmes. The forest and woodlands of administrative sub-zone Dighe were selected as a case study as they comprise trees, shrubs and other non-woody plants of outstanding importance both in terms of socio-economics and biodiversity richness. However, these resources are being rapidly depleted as a result of clearing for commercial agriculture and are under growing pressure due to resettlement of returnees and needs of other social actors. The study was carried out in three representative administrative areas of the sub-zone. A literature survey was carried out to identify the best of traditional neo-classical economic valuation methods to use in this study. Complementary methods from various streams of economics, ethnobotany, ecological anthropology and rural sociology were reviewed. The sub-set of selected marketable items were quantified and monetised based on market-based valuation approaches; and compared with non-marketable roles to indicate the magnitude of full values of the forest and woodland resources. Values that could not be quantified were described qualitatively. A production-consumption analysis of dom palm scrub leaf harvesting for household utensils was carried out. Forest health was investigated based on observation, semi-structured interviews and secondary information. The study revealed that local forests and woodlands provide essential goods and services for subsistence use, to generate income and to reduce vulnerability during times of hardships. Riverine forests, acacia woodlands and scattered trees and shrubs of grassland are the three vegetation types found in the study area. The riverine forest, dominated by dom palm, is a most valuable resource as it provides for multiple uses. Among the many marketable and non-marketable benefits, forests and woodlands provide wild food, construction material, livestock feed, household utensils, firewood, traditional medicine, shade, climate amelioration, erosion control, cultural heritages and scenic values. All members of rural households regardless of age, gender and wealth extract forest products, which minor variation between households and administrative areas. Variability of consumptive use values between households and between administrative areas and other non-marketable values are determined by relative wealth status, seasonality, resource availability and distribution, market outlets and local institutions. The study revealed that the riverine forests and woodland values of the Dighe administrative sub-zone alone have contributed economical values many times greater than US $ 1.43 million per annum for selected quantifiable items only. This would be higher if the other non-marketable forest values were monetised including the livestock grazing and access to watering points. Beyond any doubt, the high local values of forest and woodlands and consequently the contribution to the national economy justify the conservation of the remaining forest. Moreover, the production-consumption analyses showed that the present level of dom scrub leaf harvesting is sustainable. Forest health situation analysis indicates, however, that the entire forest is under immense pressure. Moreover, the findings of this study suggest that conserving forest resource for local values is compatible with the millennium global development agendas. Thesis (MScFor (Forest and Wood Science))--University of Stellenbosch, 2005.
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Azanza garkeana (morojwa) is a valuable edible indigenous fruit tree species confined to east and southern Africa. Because of its multiple use the species is selected and retained by farmers in Botswana when they clear the woodland for crops and building house. It is one of the indigenous fruit tree species that is semi-domesticated by local people in Botswana. The species is an important indigenous source of food in Botswana. Besides proving people with fruits, the tree also provides goods (timber, firewood, fodder etc.) and services (soil conservation, shade etc.). The species is an important source of essential minerals particularly P, Ca, Mg and Na. This paper reviews Azanza garckeana as an important multipurpose indigenous fruit tree with high potential social and economic value in Botswana.
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People in southern Africa are facing escalating levels of risk, uncertainty and consequently vulnerability as a result of multiple interacting stressors, including HIV/AIDS, poverty, food insecurity, weak governance, climate change and land degradation, to name but a few. Vulnerability or livelihood insecurity emerges when poor people as individuals or social units have to face harmful threats or shocks with inadequate capacity to respond effectively. In such situations, people often have no choice but to turn to their immediate environment for support. Evidence suggests that rising levels of human vulnerability are driving increased dependency on biodiversity and ecosystem services, which in turn, and along with other threats, is rendering ecosystems more vulnerable. This paper explores the dynamic and complex linkages and feedbacks between human vulnerability and ecosystem vulnerability, drawing on data from the southern African region. Human vulnerability is conceptualized as a threat to ecosystem health, as driven by the interplay between a number of current and emerging factors. We focus on poverty, HIV/AIDS and more intense climate extremes as examples of stressors on livelihoods and direct and indirect drivers of ecosystem change. We discuss how some of the responses to increased vulnerability may pose threats to biodiversity conservation, ecosystem management and sustainable development, whilst considering potential solutions that rely on a thorough understanding of coupled socialecological systems and the interplay between multiple stressors and responses at different scales.
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This paper analyzes the role of natural resources in the lives of rural children experiencing heightened vulnerability to poverty and the impact of HIV/AIDS, a subject that previously has been unexplored. The authors highlight wild-food use by rural children as a regular activity that supplements their domestic diets. Over the course of 18 months in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, the authors used a broad quantitative and qualitative methodology to explore the food acquisition and consumption patterns for 850 children. They found that the quality of children's domestic diets was, on average, 60% lower than the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) guidelines. This occurred in a population where 62% of the children surveyed were supplementing their diets with wild foods; and 30% with over half their diet supplemented in this way. Significantly, dietary diversity increased by 13% when wild food supplementation occurred. Another result was the commercialization of wild foods (observed among 47% of the children), wherein significantly more vulnerable children sold these foods. Considering the heightened nutritional and energy needs of children, combined with the impact of poverty and HIV/AIDS on household food access, wild foods represent the last freely attainable food sources available to them.
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This paper examines the role of forest extraction as a response to different types of adverse shocks among rural households in the mountainous upland of Dak Lak, Ha Tinh and Thua Thien Hue provinces, Vietnam. The hypotheses of the study are derived from new home economics theory. The reactions of households in the study areas to two types of shocks, namely covariate weather-related and idiosyncratic health shocks are analyzed. Using a probit model, results show that households affected by idiosyncratic health shocks, experienced by economically active household members, and severe weather shocks were more likely to extract forest products. The outcome of this study suggests that forest protection efforts promoted by conservationists need to be combined with poverty reduction programs taking into account the degree of vulnerability of the local population.
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This paper discusses the challenges and opportunities associated with developing and implementing National Adaptation Programmes of Action (NAPAs) in Least Developed Countries. It uses a multiple scale approach in linking local priorities for adaptation and national priorities listed as NAPA interventions to examine the outcome of the NAPA process in Burkina Faso. The study also examines how the NAPA process considers ecosystem services and reflects the views of different social groups. The results show that participatory processes were not effectively integrated at the local level, but that broader and active participation of local communities, although important, is not always necessary. The proposed priority projects were limited to the institutional and specialized fields of the experts who conducted the NAPA process. However, these priority projects do generally reflect the priorities of the study area communities. These priorities include water resources, agricultural and livestock productivity, and forestry, and all depend directly or indirectly on ecosystem services. Factors determining the success of a NAPA are the level of funding, effectiveness of the coordination and implementation of the NAPA, and the importance decision makers give to adaptation. It is also important to focus on vulnerable groups, conduct regular reviews and improvements, and strengthen institutional collaboration. The study offers recommendations and concludes that ecosystem-based approaches to adaptation can be used to enhance the resilience of communities and ecosystems.
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The proximate composition and mineral constituents of Portulaca oleracia L. leaves and stem were evaluated. The leaves and stem contained ashes—22.66%, crude protein—23.47%, crude lipid—5.26%, crude fibre—8.0% and carbohydrates—40.67%. The stem and leaves also have high energy values [303.9kcal/100g dry weight (DW)]. Mineral ranges (mg/100g DW) were: K (14.71), Na (7.17), Ca (18.71), Fe (0.48) and Zn (03.02). Comparing the leaves and stem mineral contents with recommended dietary allowances, the results indicated that P. oleracia L. leaves and stem could be a good supplement for some nutrients such as protein, carbohydrates, Ca, K, Zn and Na.
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This paper features the composition of wild fruits, their exploitation and their potential contribution to improved food and nutritional security in three districts of the Amhara region of Ethiopia. Data were gathered through structured, semi-structured and key-informant interviews which were administered to the heads of 92 randomly chosen households. Focus group discussions and direct field explorations by the researchers were also undertaken. The results revealed that altogether 44 wild fruit species are available for use in the study areas. The fruits are rich in valuable nutrients and are accessible year-round with significant overlap at times of acute food and nutrient scarcity. Nevertheless, owing to the peoples’ cereal-based dietary habits, cultural perceptions and attitudes, the current state of fruit utilization is very low. Consequently, the potential nutritional contribution of wild fruits to the people’s diets remains largely unexploited. In order to remedy this situation, a wider and sustained acceptance of wild fruits as important dietary components must be fostered.
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Tropical forests hold several goods and services used by forest-dependent people as safety nets to traverse difficult periods of resource supply. These same goods and services are constantly surrounded by emerging markets linking remote communities with major urban centers nationally and internationally. How these markets affect adaptation remains unclear. This paper examines the roles of markets in non-timber forest products that normally serve as safety nets for forest communities, and the implications for climate change adaptation in the Congo Basin. Following the identification and prioritization of forest-based development sectors for adaptation by stakeholders, the types of markets and trades surrounding the identified sectors were examined in two provinces in the Democratic Republic of Congo as a case study in order to evaluate revenue flows and their potential contribution to adaptation by local communities. The distribution of the market revenue leaves local people with returns much lower than the worth of the commodity, while wholesalers and retailers reap most of the benefits and profit from the high variability in volume and market earnings for the same commodity across provinces. Markets may increase the value of a commodity as observed in this study, but their contributions to adaptation appear highly limited for local communities following their distribution among the stakeholders in the market chain. This is likely to be worse in free market settings, especially when it diminishes the safety net roles of forest goods and services. Markets should therefore complement rather than substitute forests roles for adaptation to climate change in tropical forest countries. Capturing the benefits of trade for adaptation is crucial but will require policy reforms and further research that addresses the complexity in benefit sharing.
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Is the rural poor’s ability to self-insure threatened when their access to forests is reduced? Drawing on a Honduran case study, I examine indigenous Tawahka smallholders’ reliance on commercial extraction as they coped with multiple misfortunes following Hurricane Mitch. Although reliance on natural insurance was predicted to intensify under this scenario of aggregate shock, the state’s post-Mitch enforcement of a commercial extraction ban instead led to net attrition from forest-based activities. Households that nevertheless continued to sell forest products to self-insure were those that had been unable to recoup their pre-Mitch landholdings. Results suggest that household attributes such as land wealth strongly condition how and when forest resources act as safety nets for the rural poor.
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Natural resource-dependent societies in developing countries are facing increased pressures linked to global climate change. While social-ecological systems evolve to accommodate variability, there is growing evidence that changes in drought, storm and flood extremes are increasing exposure of currently vulnerable populations. In many countries in Africa, these pressures are compounded by disruption to institutions and variability in livelihoods and income. The interactions of both rapid and slow onset livelihood disturbance contribute to enduring poverty and slow processes of rural livelihood renewal across a complex landscape. We explore cross-scale dynamics in coping and adaptation response, drawing on qualitative data from a case study in Mozambique. The research characterises the engagements across multiple institutional scales and the types of agents involved, providing insight into emergent conditions for adaptation to climate change in rural economies. The analysis explores local responses to climate shocks, food security and poverty reduction, through informal institutions, forms of livelihood diversification and collective land-use systems that allow reciprocity, flexibility and the ability to buffer shocks. However, the analysis shows that agricultural initiatives have helped to facilitate effective livelihood renewal, through the reorganisation of social institutions and opportunities for communication, innovation and micro-credit. Although there are challenges to mainstreaming adaptation at different scales, this research shows why it is critical to assess how policies can protect conditions for emergence of livelihood transformation.
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Poor people rely on local commons not only for self-insurance, as commonly found, but also for mutual insurance, depending on resources and shocks. This paper demonstrates that this conjecture holds among cyclone victims in the Pacific Islands. On one hand, households increase coastal fishing and handicraft selling, but not forest-product gathering, to smooth income against own crop damage. On the other hand, households with undamaged housing intensify fishing to help other kin-group members with damaged housing. These distinct patterns of using commons as insurance are explained by distinct forms of risk sharing against these two shocks.
The economic value of non-timber forest products in South East Asia. The Netherlands Committee for IUCN Exploiting locally available resources for food and nutritional enhancement: wild fruits diversity, potential and state of exploitation in the Amhara region of Ethiopia
  • De Beer
  • Jh Mcdermott
De Beer JH, McDermott M (1989) The economic value of non-timber forest products in South East Asia. The Netherlands Committee for IUCN, Amsterdam Fentahun MT, Hager H (2009) Exploiting locally available resources for food and nutritional enhancement: wild fruits diversity, potential and state of exploitation in the Amhara region of Ethiopia. Food Security 1:207–219
Seasonal vulnerability to poverty and indigenous fruit use in Zimbabwe Rural poverty reduction through research for development and transformation conference, Deutscher Tropentag Azanza garckeana: a valuable indigenous fruit tree of Botswana
  • D Mithöfer
  • H Waibel
Mithöfer D, Waibel H (2004) Seasonal vulnerability to poverty and indigenous fruit use in Zimbabwe. Rural poverty reduction through research for development and transformation conference, Deutscher Tropentag, University of Hannover, Berlin Mojeremane W, Tshwenyane SO (2004) Azanza garckeana: a valuable indigenous fruit tree of Botswana. Pak J Nutr 3(5):264–267
Hunting of wildlife in tropical forests: implications for biodiversity and forest peoples World Bank biodiversity series (2012) Full planet, empty plates: the new geopolitics of food scarcity
  • El Bennett
  • Jg Robinson
Bennett EL, Robinson JG (2000) Hunting of wildlife in tropical forests: implications for biodiversity and forest peoples, vol 76, World Bank biodiversity series. World Bank, Washington, DC Brown LR (2012) Full planet, empty plates: the new geopolitics of food scarcity. WW Norton and Company, New York
The economic value of non-timber forest products in South East Asia. The Netherlands Committee for IUCN
  • L R Brown
  • M Mcdermott
Brown LR (2012) Full planet, empty plates: the new geopolitics of food scarcity. WW Norton and Company, New York De Beer JH, McDermott M (1989) The economic value of non-timber forest products in South East Asia. The Netherlands Committee for IUCN, Amsterdam
Wild food plants in Ethiopia: reflections on the role of "wild foods" and "famine foods" in times of drought
  • Y Guinand
  • D Lemessa
Guinand Y, Lemessa D (2001) Wild food plants in Ethiopia: reflections on the role of "wild foods" and "famine foods" in times of drought. United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Emergencies Unit for Ethiopia (UNDP-EUE), Rome
Seasonal vulnerability to poverty and indigenous fruit use in Zimbabwe. Rural poverty reduction through research for development and transformation conference
  • D Mithöfer
  • H Waibel
Mithöfer D, Waibel H (2004) Seasonal vulnerability to poverty and indigenous fruit use in Zimbabwe. Rural poverty reduction through research for development and transformation conference, Deutscher Tropentag, University of Hannover, Berlin
Livelihoods and vulnerability in the arid and semi-arid lands of southern Africa: exploring the links between ecosystem services and poverty alleviation
  • C M Shackleton
  • S E Shackleton
  • J Gambiza
  • E Nel
  • K Rowntree
  • P Urquhart
  • C Fabricus
  • CM Shackleton
Shackleton CM, Shackleton SE, Gambiza J, Nel E, Rowntree K, Urquhart P, Fabricus C, Ainslie A (2010) Livelihoods and vulnerability in the arid and semi-arid lands of southern Africa: exploring the links between ecosystem services and poverty alleviation. Nova Publishers, New York, p 267
From subsistence, to safety nets and cash income: exploring the diverse values of non-timber forest products for livelihoods and poverty alleviation
  • S E Shackleton
  • De Lang
  • A Angelsen
Shackleton SE, De Lang, Angelsen A (2011) From subsistence, to safety nets and cash income: exploring the diverse values of non-timber forest products for livelihoods and poverty alleviation. Chapter 3 -pp 55-82. In: Shackleton SE, Shackleton CM, Shanley P (eds) Non-timber forest products in the global context. Springer, Heidelberg. ISBN 978-3-642-1798-2; e-ISBN 978-3-642-17983-9, 280 pp
Full planet, empty plates: the new geopolitics of food scarcity
  • L R Brown
  • LR Brown
The economic value of non-timber forest products in South East Asia. The Netherlands Committee for IUCN
  • De Beer
  • J H Mcdermott
  • JH Beer De