Super food moringa | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 10, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 10:27 AM, January 10, 2019

Super food moringa

Chuadanga farmer leads the way in growing the highly nutritious food

Dear readers, today I want to take you to Chuadanga Sadar. I went there to meet Kola Quader (Banana Quader), famous for his banana production. But, this Kola Quader has now turned into moringa or drumstick grower. Since morinaga is a very nutritious food, Quader is more focused on its leaves and brought a new dimension in Bangladeshi farming scenario by making the moringa leaves more and more significant. Quader has planted a lot of moringa in his village. Although you may recollect Quader with his bananas, let us see the other side of his farming with moringa.      

His small homestead is full of greenery. It can be said that his house itself is a complete farm. His courtyard is full of various plants and trees, including moringa.

Abdul Quader took me to show his area. He showed many moringa plants by the roadside, some very old and some new, mostly planted by his own hands. It is a great thing to learn that farmers are well aware of the value of moringa, both health and financial. 

The nutritional value of moringa leaves makes moringa itself a super food. In many countries of the world, since long before, it has been talked about. Many consider it to be a medicinal tree. These days, moringa is being considered a combination of food and nutrition. Earlier, in Bangladesh, moringa did not much have much value to the farmers. One or two moringa trees used to grow in a corner of the homestead without any care. However, now, considering the market value and demand for the tree, farmers are considering planting more moringa trees. But, many farmers are still unaware of the moringa leaf but they all know about the drumstick. Abdul Quader's work in promoting the value of the moringa leaf is really praiseworthy.

Upazila Agriculture Officer Talha Zubair Mashrur, too, has already done studies on moringa and says there are lots of advantages in the crop.

There are various researches going on about the moringa tree and its leaves. The moringa leaves have the most nutritional value. Researchers say that moringa leaves are being used for various purposes since ancient times. The leaves have a mystical power. Today's advanced science too tells a similar story. Various international researchers say that the moringa leaves have four times more Vitamin C compared to oranges, four times more calcium and double the protein than milk, four times more Vitamin A than in carrots and three times more potassium than in bananas. That's why it is being called super food.

It has protein, vitamins, amino acids and beta carotene, along with many more minerals. Every part of a moringa tree has some nutritional value. The oil extracted from moringa seeds has astonishing nutritional value. Nowadays, many countries are exploring the business of moringa trees. To mention a few places, South Africa, Malawi, Cambodia, Philippines, Kenya, Ethiopia, along with many other countries, are farming moringa commercially.

Demand for moringa tablets with nutritional values added is increasing day by day in Europe and America. They are being sold through online markets like Amazon or Alibaba. A file of 100 tablets is sold from $15 to $25, which is about Tk 1,500 to Tk 2,000. This has also started in Bangladesh in a limited way. Already people like Rajib Parvez have started to encourage people to grow moringa tree, collect the leaves, and distribute it among the people. He tells us that just as it is a magical ingredient for people, in the same way it can also be beneficial for the livestock animals and plants. Rajib has already done multifaceted tests regarding the various uses of moringa leaves.

Dear readers, in an age of advanced technology, it is easy to find out the advantages of something. Moringa or its leaves have come to us as a surprise in this regard. We hope that the medicinal or nutritional value of moringa tree or leaves will be known to all and that planned expansion of its cultivation takes place in the country.

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