Categories: South Africa

Indigenous Foods of Africa Festival

Representatives from countries across Africa recently gathered at an indigenous foods event hosted in Limpopo to showcase the cuisine of their respective countries.

The indigenous foods event formed part of the Africa Month celebration, and was hosted by the Indigenous Foods of South Africa (IndiZA Foods) and the Department of Arts and Culture (DAC), under the theme, “The Year of OR Tambo: Building a Better Africa and a Better World”, to celebrate the legacy of OR Tambo and to promote African unity.

Representatives present were from Ghana, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland and Namibia.

Women from various ethnic backgrounds, including those of Zulu, Venda, Khoisan, Afrikaans, Sotho, Northern Sotho, Ndebele, Tsonga, Venda and Xhosa descent, showcased the traditional cuisine of their respective ethnic groups.

According to Kgaladi Thema, managing director of IndiZA Foods, the event was an effort to improve indigenous knowledge (IK), which provided the basis for problem-solving strategies for local communities, especially the poor.

IK was an underutilised resource in Africa’s development, Thema said. She added that learning from local communities created an understanding of local conditions, and provided an important context for activities designed to help them.

The project objectives included:

  • Sharing knowledge and attracting rural communities to be intimately involved in IK development and African foods;
  • Celebrating the diversity of Africa’s people through their traditional cuisines;
  • Celebrating the unity of Africans by bringing Africans together;
  • Celebrating African cuisine, its heritage, and its knowledge.
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