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  • Final harvest for the 2021 From Tree to Fork campaign

Final harvest for the 2021 From Tree to Fork campaign

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FTA communications

The From Tree to Fork campaign is wrapping up for the season, and it’s been a fruitful harvest so far. The 18 fruits and vegetables released up until now bring more visibility to the important contributions of tree foods to livelihoods, cultural traditions, food security, nutrition and more.

For example, did you know that Camu-camu (Myrciaria dubia) contains 30-60x more vitamin C than the same serving of oranges? Each fruit in the campaign collected trivia like this with engaging infographics and scientist-reviewed facts about some of the most unknown and underutilized fruits and vegetables from trees. Much of this information came from CIFOR-ICRAF databases including the Priority Food Tree and Crop Food Composition Database, the Tree Functional Attributes and Ecological Database and the AgroforesTree Database.

Launched earlier this year, From Tree to Fork is aligned with other important initiatives on the global agenda including the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables (IYFV) — a time to raise awareness for how trees can help make food systems more sustainable and resilient worldwide. This year (2021) also marks the start of the U.N. Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, which has direct links to food trees and agroforestry because people are more likely to restore landscapes with trees that have multiple benefits for human health and well-being.


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A few of the scientists who worked on the campaign also shared their personal experiences with these valuable tree foods.

“As a huge lover of chocolate, I was delighted to discover that ‘chocolate’ could also be made out of a whole different species [Copoazu (Theobroma grandiflorum)!” said FTA scientist, Elisabeth Lagneaux. “Try it if you can.”

Michael Brady, a CIFOR principal scientist and leader of FTA’s Flagship 3, has a similarly positive experience associated with Sago, a starch made from the trunk of the Sago palm tree (Metroxylon sagu):

“I did my graduate research in Sumatra and met my wife there,” he said. “During that time, I have many happy memories of eating Pempek, a famous dish made by mixing Sago flour and fish that is eaten throughout the island.”

These colourful images and key messages are also featured as part of a virtual exhibit on FTA’s new Google Arts & Culture page. This display, along with seven other stories on the page, champion the importance of forests, trees and agroforestry to respond to environmental crises. Also, check out the recently released FTA Highlights Volume No. 5 on Food Security and Nutrition to learn more about the work scientists have done on tree foods over the last 10 years.



In 2021 we brought you 18 infographics and more than 50 eCards and key messages on particular tree foods. There are many more underutilized fruits and vegetables that the campaign was not able to cover this year, and we hope to bring you more in 2022. Here’s a taste of what we could serve you…

  1. Peach palm (Bactris gasipaes)
  2. Ungurahui (Oenocarpus bataua)
  3. Monkey orange (Strychnos cocculoids)
  4. Safou (Dacryodes edulis)
  5. Marula (Sclerocarya birrea)
  6. Kiawe (Prosopis pallida)
  7. Wild plumb (Ximenia americana)
  8. Shea (Vitellaria paradoxa)
  9. Cherimoya (Annona cherimola)
  10. Bengal quince (Aegle marmelos)
  11. Abiu (Pouteria caimito)


Enjoy your holidays and make sure you treat yourselves a different fruit every day!


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  • Launching "From Tree to Fork" – an FTA Campaign

Launching “From Tree to Fork” – an FTA Campaign

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Posted by

FTA communications

Did you know that the fruit from the Baobab tree (Adansonia digitata L.) can contain up to six times more vitamin C than the same serving size of oranges and twice as much calcium as milk? Or that tamarind fruits are rich in protein and antioxidants, containing 40 percent more protein than the same serving size of avocado?

Though often unstated, forests and trees are much more than greenhouse gas banks (GHG) and ecosystem service providers; they are some of the world’s most valuable food producers. Their fruits and vegetables provide essential nutrition, dietary diversity, medicine and sources of income to people everywhere. When sustainably managed in agroforestry systems, increasing evidence shows that food trees are also primary engines of sustainable agricultural transformation, limiting deforestation while enriching the soil and generating valuable crops and wood products.

Both the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables (IYFV) and the start of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration make 2021 an especially relevant time to reflect on the essential role of tree foods for human health, nutrition and food security. Several FTA events this year have already spotlighted these benefits. For example, during an event that was co-hosted by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization last February, FTA’s FP1 Leader, Ramni Jamnadass, presented on the challenges of conserving fruit tree species and sharing genetic resources to make food systems more resilient. The UN Food Systems Pre-Summit last month also featured sessions in which FTA scientists such as Fergus Sinclair, Amy Ickowitz and Stepha McMullin championed agroecology and food trees conservation.

In this context, the CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry (FTA) is launching “From Tree to Fork”a communication campaign to raise awareness about some of the most unrecognized and underappreciated fruits and vegetables that come from trees.

With its captivating graphics and scientist-reviewed information, “From Tree to Fork” is aligned with the current global agenda to celebrate these benefits. Many of the tree foods compiled here supply key nutrients in local and indigenous diets around the world. Other parts of these trees including their leaves and bark are often used for medicine, carpentry, cultural traditions and in agroforestry systems where they can enhance soil fertility and improve crop survival rates. Together, the nutritional and livelihood functions of food-tree species contribute to community stability, income generation and dietary diversity.

New fruits and vegetables with colourful infographics to download will be released one-by-one over the rest of 2021 on a weekly basis, so stay tuned to never miss out on the updates. In the meantime, here are some quick facts to snack on!

  • The leaves of Jacote trees have been shown to exhibit anti-bacterial properties. A single 100 g edible portion of Jacote contains 63% of the potassium requirements for children aged 4-6 years old!
  • Rich in antioxidants and high in vitamin C, bitter beans are also enjoyed by hornbills, monkeys, squirrels, deer, elephants and wild pigs. The wood of the tree is used for pulp to manufacture paper and in carpentry.
  • The productivity life-time of a Palmyra Palm is over 100 years! The tree in India is said to have “800 uses” and it is considered a cultural symbol in many Asian countries.
  • The seeds of the African Breadfruit contain more protein than soybeans!


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