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Indigenous Fruit Trees of Tropical Africa: Status, Opportunity for Development and Biodiversity Management

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DOI: 10.4236/as.2015.61004    7,013 Downloads   8,268 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Tropical fruit trees constitute important biological resources in the global agrobiodiversity context. Unlike the tropical fruit trees of American and Asian origin, indigenous fruit trees (IFT) of tropical Africa have scarcely achieved the status of international recognition in commodity markets and research arena outside Africa. This paper presented a critical review of the status of IFT in the Tropical African sub-regions (of West Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands) in relation to the introduced naturalised fruit trees from tropical America and Asia, threats to the diversity and sustainable use of IFT, analysis of the opportunities and challenges of developing IFT, as well as targets for crop improvement of the rich IFT of Tropical Africa. Domestication programme via relevant vegetative propagation techniques for priority IFT of the sub-regions was examined and advocated, in addition to the adoption of complementary conservation strategies, including Field GeneBanks in the management of the continent’s IFT diversity.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Awodoyin, R. , Olubode, O. , Ogbu, J. , Balogun, R. , Nwawuisi, J. and Orji, K. (2015) Indigenous Fruit Trees of Tropical Africa: Status, Opportunity for Development and Biodiversity Management. Agricultural Sciences, 6, 31-41. doi: 10.4236/as.2015.61004.

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