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Beans - transforming the lives of many
Video Fair (IVF)
Extracted from IVF Newsletter: Issue No 9 (Sept - Dec 2006)
November 01, 2006
Soya Bean is miraculously
transforming the lives of many people in Africa due to its high
The crop which has its
origins in Asia is high in protein and is generally good for everyone's
health. However in recent years it has been largely recommended
for people who are living with the HIV virus.
In countries like Nigeria
Soya production and marketing has become big business due to its
nutritional properties and that it is a cheap source of protein.
Many women are now able to generate income from selling Soya bean
products, giving them financial independence to look after their
"Soya beans are
a near perfect crop for a country like Nigeria," says Lukas
Brader, director general of the International Institute of Tropical
Agriculture in a recent article on the benefits of Soya. "Nutritionally,
they carry twice the protein of meat or poultry and contain all
eight essential amino acids needed for childhood development."
Not only is it nutritious
to humans but to soil too, thus many farmers worldwide are farming
it as it is far less vulnerable to local insects than African bean
crops and require few insecticide sprays. It fixes atmospheric nitrogen,
which reduces the need for farmers to buy fertilizer.
Ndaka Moyo, a Zimbabwean
woman, learnt the skill of making Soya products from her father
and for several years now has been teaching it to others - her family
and church members, neighbors, relatives and friends.
"I was taught by
my father Mr Jim Rose, who learnt it from a publication entitled
The Book of Tofu," she said.
She also teaches
this skill to people living with the HIV virus who visit The
Centre, an AIDS counseling organization, which also gives advice
on proper diet, gardening on beneficial herbs and home based care.
"Yes, it is an
excellent source of protein. Some people who were bedridden with
the virus recovered when given Soya milk by The Centre. Many people
were also helped by E-pap which contains Soya flour," said
She hopes to spread the
skill to Zimbabwean communities in particular women on the benefits
of using and making Soya Bean products.
"Well I hope to
be able to spread the word about eating healthy to people living
with the virus, in particular the benefits of Soya products. In
essence I would like to reach those that are affected by the HIV
& AIDS virus as well those infected."
Ndaka who has been selling
Soya products on a small scale believes the market in Zimbabwe is
huge due to economic hardships that have seen many products out
of reach of the majority of ordinary people.
20 litres of Soya milk
costs the same as one litre of dairy milk and it has fifty percent
more protein. In making Soya milk, one teaspoon of Dolomite is added
for each litre to add calcium, which is important for growing children.
Soya milk has an acquired
taste and some people may like it immediately while others may not
like the taste initially, which is different from cow's milk.
In making Soya milk,
one cup of beans is soaked, drained rinsed, mashed and mixed with
four cups of water. The mixture is brought to boil while stirring.
Once it has boiled the mixture is then poured into porous embroidery
cloth sack and pressed for milk. The pressed milk is then boiled
for an additional 10 minutes.
that can be made from Soya are Tofu, Okara, Soya Lacto and Soya
yogurt. Tofu is something like cheese while Okara is what is left
in the bag after the milk has been pressed. When baked in the oven
it can be used as chunks.
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