Professor of Biotechnology at the Faculty of Agriculture of the University for Development Studies, Professor Albert Kojo Quainoo, has indicated that the Shea tree has a lot of great untapped potentials which must be looked at.
Shea latex he indicated can constitute an important source of raw material for the gum and rubber industry, which can create employment opportunities for millions of Ghanaians.
He made this known during the 7th Inaugural Lecture of the University for Development Studies (UDS) on the topic “Unearthing the Hidden Potentials of the Shea Tree”.
The lecture was aimed at presenting the other side of the Shea Tree which has not attracted serious interest and attention from both researchers and scientists in the country and beyond, saw people from different spheres of life in attendance.
Delivering his lecture, Professor Quainoo called for the need to add value to the Shea tree by learning about the genetic background of the Shea.
He made an appeal to appropriate authorities to make resources available for research works in that area.
He further made a passionate appeal to people who resort to the felling of the Shea tree for other economic gains to desist from the menace.
Meanwhile the Vice Chancellor of the UDS who also doubled as the Chairman for the occasion, Professor Gabriel Ayum Teye, congratulated the Professor for the good work than in his area of research.
Shea also known as “Vitellaria Paradoxa” is an important multipurpose tree which serves as the principal source of income for the locals in the Sahel Region.
It covers more than 78,000 Km2 of the entire northern Ghana, with a potential annual yield of about 130,000 metric tons of Shea products.
Shea oil is the main edible oil for the people of Northern Ghana and it serves as the most important source of fatty acids in diets.
It also has anti-microbial properties, which gives it a place in herbal medicine.
The Shea plays a significant role in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries.
It has been confirmed that almost every part of the tree has some uses.
Source: Fiilafmoline/Shawana Yussif