Nutritional properties of minor millets: neglected cereals with potentials to combat malnutrition

Chandel, G. and Meena, R.K. and Dubey, M. and Kumar, M. (2014) Nutritional properties of minor millets: neglected cereals with potentials to combat malnutrition. Current Science, 107 (7). pp. 1109-1111.

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Millet is a general term for a wide range of cereals. Minor millets are a group of grassy plants with short slender culm and small grains possessing remarkable ability to survive under adverse conditions like limited rainfall, poor soil fertility and land terrain. Minor millets categorized as coarse cereals are staple food for the tribal people where cultivation of major cereals like rice, wheat and maize is either not popular or fail to produce substantial yield1. Millets differ from one another by their appearances, and morphological features, maturity, grain type, etc. (Figure 1). India is considered as hub for these minor crops, according to the latest data, the world total production of millet grains at last count was 762,712 metric tonnes and the top producer was India with an annual production of 334,500 tonnes contributing 43.85% (ref. 2). In Bastar district of Chhattisgarh, which is one of the largest congregations of tribal population (67.4%), inhabitants mainly grow millets and form major component of their daily food consumption. In addition to be nutritionally rich, the advantage of growing minor millets is that it is a rainfed crop which forms part of a multi-cropping system, in the sense that it is mostly grown along with legumes and oilseeds3,4. On the darker side, these are underutilized and neglected crops owing to their lower preference driven by affluence, longer time and efforts involved in processing of the millets and the lower cooking quality. If these problems could be solved, their high nutritional value can make them doubly valuable as food for farming families and a potential source of income.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Minor millets, malnutrition,cereals
Author Affiliation: Department of Plant Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, College of Agriculture, Indira Gandhi Krishi Vishwavidyalaya, Raipur 492 012, India
Subjects: Postharvest Management
Divisions: Millet
Depositing User: Mr T L Gautham
Date Deposited: 30 Aug 2017 06:21
Last Modified: 30 Aug 2017 06:21

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