Emerging evidence indorse shifts in food production, reduction in yield due to climate variability and change. An increase in food production is a requirement to respond to the demands of the growing population worldwide. As many studies focus on underutilised and/or neglected crops. The questions are, underutilised by who? Or neglected by who? These are the indigenous ancient crop species utilised from generations to generations, which are used by most in rural areas mostly across all African countries. These crop species are utilised for consumption and medicinal purposes within localities, needs to be acknowledged, supported and not grouped as food for the “poor” or “weeds”. Besides, its promotion as a food of choice is the best climate change adaptation strategy. A huge variety of crops avails rather than relying on few crop species. Utilisation of selected few crops leaves the abundance of genetic resources for food security and nutrition. Focusing on the promotion of disadvantaged crops would provide a diversified agricultural system and food resources. Such crop species play an integral role for income generation and nutritional balance. The crop species have a great prospective to enhance crop diversity, food variety and nutrition. Field management systems plays a significant role on when to introduce weeding control mechanisms, when to harvest and which types of these crops to expect per season. With the use of transdisciplinary research approach, we provide a list of disadvantaged crop species and evidence to improve food and nutrition security, increase agricultural diversification, minimise environmental and its physiological response show resilience in the changing climate.
Zuma-Netshiukhwi G. The significance of disadvantaged crop species to improve food systems and security in the changing climate: Learning from Motheo District, South Africa. Int. J. Agric. Nutr. 2022;4(1):44-52.