Foods native to indigenous and afro-descendents in Colombia
Archivos latinoamericanos de nutrición
Alimentos autóctonos de las comunidades indígenas y afrodescendientes de Colombia
For social programs in Colombia, like those administered by the Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar (ICBF), it's important to know what native foods minority groups consume. This research obtained information on native foods consumed by indigenous and afro-descendents living in 10 Colombian departments: Cauca, Nariño, Amazonas, Chocó, Guainia, Vichada, Magdalena, Guajira, Cesar y Vaupés. A questionnaire was applied to key informants (individually or in groups), addressing the following
... ing the following topics: personal information on the informant, name and type of food, if consumed by indigenous and/or afro-Colombians, climate where produced, time of year when harvested, if consumed raw or cooked, preparations, properties ascribed to the food, and current production, use and availability. Key informants included participants in ICBF's programs, indigenous authorities, teachers, traditional healers, and others, under the supervision of professionals from ICBF's mobile unit in each department. Bibliography (n = 123 documents) was compiled and reviewed. In the departments selected, 13 municipalities were visited, 139 individuals were interviewed and at least 92 new foods (i.e., not currently included in the Colombian Food Composition Table) were identified. Among the 92, the scientific name was obtained for 62 foods. Of these, 2 were classified as other, 18 as meats, 3 as insects, and 39 as plants. Among the plants, informants mentioned fruit (n=29), leaves (n=4), seed (n=3) and roots (n=3). Indigenous and afro-descendent communities in Colombia report consuming dozens of foods that are not currently in the Colombian Food Composition Table.