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Box 3 Explaining subgroups for positioning WEPs in food consumption surveys

From: Addressing constraints in promoting wild edible plants’ utilization in household nutrition: case of the Congo Basin forest area

Category 1: Soups and sauces
1. Uncultivated vegetables from the forest: This will include leaves, young shoots and herbs used in large quantities for food preparation to accompany staples
2. Pulps and condiments: These are all forms of pulps/paste/powder in which WEPs were used as a main constituent in the diet or added to the meal/sauce as a thickener or substantial part of the sauce
3. Spices: These are substances added to food in small amounts of <5% volume of the pot being prepared, and often used mainly for flavor and taste
4. Mushrooms: These are all undomesticated fungi collected from the wild for consumption
5. Oil: These are extracted from forest seeds traditionally
Category 2: Food staples and wraps
1. Starchy roots: This includes all staple foods from the forest like wild yams
2. Wraps: These are fresh Marantaceae spp. or banana leaves used fresh for bundling various pastes and sometime spiced meat and fish before they are put in the pot for cooking. Most traditional food and staples are prepared using these wraps and therefore wraps, although not directly eaten, are indispensable in the acquisition of especially most consumed staples in households
Category 3: Vitamins, snacks and appetizers
1. Stimulants: These are leisure foods items taken for excitement or as a habit
2. Appetizers: These are food items or combination of foods that are eaten to increase appetite and subsequently food intake. Although small and scarce, this food group is very important in this area especially because people typically have just one course in a meal even children, nursing mothers and sick people
3. Wild fruits: These are fruits from uncultivated sources. It is important to distinguish this category from general fruits since fruits also present many categories of food items like vegetables
4. Drinks: These are saps from palm and raphia
5. Sugars and sweeteners: These are plant nectars/honey used as sweeteners in food