Vol. 10 No. 2
Importance of biodiversity of fruit crops and their wild relatives for food and nutritional security in Azerbaijan
Author(s): M. Musayev, z. Akparov and t. Huseynova
Abstract: The Azerbaijan Republic considered being primary or secondary center of origin, domestication and diversity of many indigenous varieties of folk selection of fruit crops and their crop wild relatives (CWRs). The wild relatives of major fruits and nuts like grapevine, apple, pear, quince, medlar, pomegranate, fig, cherry, apricot, almond, hazelnut, walnut, chestnut, pistachio and others are presented along with many genera of the flora of Azerbaijan. The activity of Genetic Resources Institute (GRI) of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Science (ANAS) is collections, reproduction, studies, documentation and conservation of the gene pool of local resources of landraces of fruit plants, including their crop wild relatives (CWRs). The CWRs in Azerbaijan are conserved in protected areas and botanical gardens, as well as ex-situ and on-farm conservation in field collections of the National Genebank. Despite broad utilization of native varieties in the conventional agriculture the traditions of usage of crop wild relatives for food, food additives or environmental purposes still kept among populations like fresh fruit consumption, as a row material for processing and making of traditional food (‘Doshab’, ‘Behmez’, ‘Narsharab’, ‘Nardancha’, ‘Achta’, ‘Lavashana’ and others), including in a food chain as a feed for domestic animals, initial materials for breeding. Except fruit utilization the wild relatives are operate as rootstocks and for live fences; they are honey, decorative and medical plants, suitable for making anti-erosion and wind-brake line plantations, forest garden construction. For the purpose of collecting aboriginal varieties and their wild relatives of fruit crops a number of expeditions were organized in different regions of our Republic, their areal was determined, biological-agricultural traits of collected varieties and forms were evaluated. Collected materials were maintained in the national gene bank enriching the collections. Therefore, conservation of plant genetic diversity, selection, evaluation and protection are of high importance nowadays. It is expected that increasing public awareness of CWR by publication and events, will enhance protection and conservation of important species for further utilization....
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