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Peach palm (Bactris gasipaes) in tropical Latin America: implications for biodiversity conservation, natural resource management and human nutrition

Graefe S., Dufour D., Van Zonneveld M., Rodriguez F., Gonzalez A.. 2013. Biodiversity and Conservation, 22 (2) : p. 269-300.

DOI: 10.1007/s10531-012-0402-3

Peach palm (Bactris gasipaes) is a multi-purpose palm tree native to tropical Latin America, which is predominantly cultivated by smallholders in agroforestry systems. The fruits are rich in starch and contribute importantly to food security and the cash income of farmers who cultivate them. Complex value chains have emerged that link producers to consumers, but irregular product quality and market chain inequalities undermine the economic well-being of producers and retailers. Peach palm is genetically diverse, but screening for traits of commercial and nutritional interest is required to enhance the use of its genetic resources. Alliances between public organizations and private enterprises are needed to realize the potential for processing novel products from peach palm, especially in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic sectors. The diverse challenges that emerge at different stages of production, processing and marketing require participatory research that directly involves stakeholders from the beginning.

Mots-clés : bactris gasipaes; agroforesterie; fruits; valeur nutritive; qualité; composition globale; utilisation; technologie alimentaire; consommation alimentaire; variation génétique; conservation des ressources; petite exploitation agricole; environnement socioéconomique; arbre à buts multiples; amérique latine; colombie

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