Sights, Sounds, and Tastes of Africa
There is simplicity in the food system of Africa that is only truly appreciated when chopping down your first sugar cane, learning the art of peeling and biting it raw. Within that bite, it is easy to feel the immeasurably different experience you may have opening a packet of refined sugar to put in your morning cup of coffee.
Negative media images often highlight the starving population in Africa, as well as the dry desert climate - for good reason. Though, a simple guided tour through rural villages will offer you a new perspective on food, climate, and health. Africa hosts four major climate zones: deserts, savannas, mild zones and rainforests. Each climate is home to some of the world’s most exotic and nutrient dense crops.
Through observation alone you are able to see how the culture connects with the land. By day, villagers are tending to their gardens, by mid afternoon the community is inside preparing their meals on efficient charcoal stoves. Many households foster chickens, and if lucky cows and goats. Community gardens are packed with beans, sweet potato, peppers, onions, greens, cassava, pineapple, sugar cane, plantains, jackfruit, and rice.
In the modern industrialized food system, not everyone has the opportunity to know where the food on their plate has come from, and for many there is a yearning to connect to the land. As a Westerner, it is not the natural instinct to question who has raised the chicken one might eat, or to know what crops are in season at the time. There is simplicity in the food system of Africa that is only truly appreciated when chopping down your first sugar cane, learning the art of peeling and biting it raw. Within that bite, it is easy to feel the immeasurably different experience you may have opening a packet of refined sugar to put in your morning cup of coffee.
The African soils offer a bountiful variety of exotic fruits and vegetables fresh from the ground. Western labels might identify the village farming practices beyond organic, or biodynamic (Biodynamics is a spiritual-ethical-ecological approach to agriculture, food production and nutrition), though the reality is that this form of agriculture is the most natural, sustainable and healthy. Experiencing this form of agriculture is something that will connect you to the food you eat, as well as give you a new perspective of Africa.
One of the things that I enjoyed most during my trip to Africa, and particularly Uganda was the fresh fruits and foods. I would recommend this country to anyone looking for fresh organic foods, stunning sights and wonderful people in an African safari. To learn more click here.