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Traditional fermented foods and beverages of Namibia

Misihairabgwi, Jane, Cheikhyoussef, Ahmad
Journal of ethnic foods 2017 v.4 no.3 pp. 145-153
beverages, biochemistry, dairy products, diet, fermented foods, food security, income, livelihood, microbiology, nutritive value, processing technology, traditional foods, Namibia
Although traditional fermented foods and beverages play an important role in contributing to the livelihoods of Namibians through enhanced food security and income generation, there is a scarcity of information regarding their traditional production methods, microbiological and biochemical characteristics, nutritional value, and safety. Research into the processing technologies of these foods and beverages is still in its infancy; thus, there is a need to document their traditional production methods, microbiology, and biochemistry in order to evaluate their nutritional value and safety, standardize and industrialize them, where possible, and preserve them for future generations.The socioeconomic importance, traditional production methods and, where available, microbiological, biochemical, and nutritional properties and safety evaluation of commonly consumed fermented foods and beverages in Namibia are documented. Recommendations are made for potential research areas.Commonly produced fermented foods and beverages in Namibia include milk-based products (omashikwa, mashini ghakushika, mabisi, and âudaï), cereal-based beverages (oshikundu, omalodu, otombo, epwaka, okatokele, oshafuluka, maxau, and /Ho ≠Goas), vegetable-based fermented food, mudhika, and fruit-based beverages (ombike, omagongo, and omalunga).Fermented foods and beverages play a major role in the diet, socioeconomic, and cultural activities of the Namibian population. Most are spontaneously fermented. Research is scarce and should be conducted on the microbiology, biochemistry, nutritional value, and safety of the fermented foods and beverages to ensure the health of the population.