Most common indigenous food crops of South Africa

Content Type: 
Curated Content

Directorate: Plant Production

Funding Partner: 
Date of publication: 
October, 2013
Gender marker: 
Youth marker: 

Indigenous food crops refer to food crops that have their origin in South Africa. Added to these crops are those that were introduced into the country and are now recognised as naturalised or traditional crops. They are divided into three main categories; namely grains, vegetables and fruit.

South Africa possesses a huge diversity of indigenous food crops, which includes grains, leafy vegetables and wild fruit types. These crops are produced and found growing in the country under various weather conditions. Their production within the rural farming communities is on small scale and is mainly for subsistence purposes. Most of the arable land is used mainly for production of maize and other exotic crops.

Other Partners: 

Agricultural Research Council (ARC), South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), Food and Agriculture Organizaion (FAO)

and International Crops Research Institute for the Semiarid Tropics (ICRISAT)

Food, indigenous, vegetables
Contact name (for further information): 
Plant Production Director
Contact email (for further information): 
Contact phone (for further information): 
+27 12 319 6072
South Africa
CCARDESA Category: 

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