Sorghum is a type of cereal grain that is native to Africa and is grown primarily in hot, dry regions. It is a hardy crop that is able to withstand drought conditions and is resistant to pests and diseases. Sorghum is a major staple food in many parts of the world, especially in Africa and India, where it is used to make a variety of dishes including porridge, bread, and couscous.
Sorghum is also used to make a sweet syrup called sorghum molasses, which is similar to molasses made from sugar cane. In addition to its use as a food, sorghum is also used as a feed grain for livestock, as well as for the production of biofuels and other industrial products.
The word “sorghum” is derived from the Italian word “sorgo,” which itself is derived from the Latin word “Sorghum.” The origin of the Latin word is uncertain, but it is believed to be of African origin. Further, the word “bicolor” in the scientific name refers to the two-colored appearance of the plant, with the upper part of the stem and the inflorescence (flowering structure) being a different color than the lower part of the stem.
Global statistics about sorghum
According to data from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), global production of sorghum was approximately 35 million metric tons in 2020 and the global area planted with sorghum was approximately 32 million hectares. The top five producers of sorghum in 2020 were the United States, Mexico, Nigeria, India, and Sudan, which together accounted for about 60% of global production.
- The United States was the largest producer of sorghum in 2020, with a production of around 8.5 million metric tons.
- Nigeria was the second-largest producer of sorghum in 2020, with a production of around 7.5 million metric tons.
- India was the third-largest producer of sorghum in 2020, with a production of around 6.5 million metric tons.
- Sudan was the fourth-largest producer of sorghum in 2020, with a production of around 5.5 million metric tons.
- Mexico was the fifth-largest producer of sorghum in 2020, with a production of around 3.5 million metric tons.
Botanical classification of sorghum
Sorghum is a type of grass in the family Poaceae. The scientific name for sorghum is Sorghum bicolor. It is a cereal grain that is native to Africa and is grown primarily in hot, dry regions. The botanical classification of sorghum is as follows:
- Kingdom: Plantae (plants)
- Subkingdom: Tracheobionta (vascular plants)
- Superdivision: Spermatophyta (seed plants)
- Division: Magnoliophyta (flowering plants)
- Class: Liliopsida (monocotyledons)
- Subclass: Commelinidae
- Order: Poales
- Family: Poaceae (grass family)
- Subfamily: Panicoideae
- Tribe: Andropogoneae
- Genus: Sorghum
- Species: Sorghum bicolor
Botanical description of sorghum
Sorghum is a major staple food in many parts of the world, especially in Africa and India, where it is used to make a variety of dishes including porridge, bread, and couscous. Detailed botanical description of the structure of sorghum:
Root system: Sorghum has a deep, well-developed root system that allows it to withstand drought conditions. The plant has a main taproot that grows down into the soil, as well as numerous lateral roots that branch off from the main root. The root system is able to absorb water and nutrients from the soil and provide support for the plant.
Stem: The stem of sorghum is tall, erect, and typically ranges in height from 1-4 meters. It is typically green in color, but may turn yellow or brown as the plant matures. The stem is made up of nodes, which are points where the leaves and branches are attached, and internodes, which are the spaces between the nodes.
Leaves: The leaves of sorghum are long, narrow, and flat, and are typically 30-100 cm long and 2-6 cm wide. They are arranged alternately along the stem and have a pointed tip and a finely serrated margin. The leaves are typically green in color, but may turn yellow or brown as the plant matures.
Flowers: The flowers of sorghum are small and inconspicuous, and are typically green or purplish in color. They are arranged in clusters on the plant and are surrounded by small, papery bracts. The flowers have both male and female parts, and are pollinated by wind or insects.
Fruit: The fruit of sorghum is a grain that is produced in clusters on the plant. The grain is encased in a hard, papery husk and is typically white, yellow, or reddish in color. It is round or oblong in shape and is high in protein and energy.
History of sorghum
Sorghum is a hardy crop that is able to withstand drought conditions and is resistant to pests and diseases, making it an important food source in many parts of the world. The exact origin and domestication of sorghum is not well understood, but it is believed to have been cultivated in Africa for thousands of years.
There is evidence that sorghum was being cultivated in Africa as early as 2500 BC. The grain was used to make a variety of dishes, including porridge, bread, and beer, and was also used as a feed grain for livestock. Sorghum was later introduced to other parts of the world, including Asia and the Middle East, where it was grown and used in similar ways.
Sorghum was first introduced to the United States in the 19th century, where it was primarily grown for livestock feed. However, in the late 20th and early 21st centuries, there has been a resurgence of interest in sorghum as a food grain, and it is now being grown and used in a variety of ways, including for the production of biofuels and other industrial products.
The history and domestication of sorghum has been shaped by a variety of factors, including its ability to withstand drought conditions, its resistance to pests and diseases, and its versatility as a food and feed grain. The grain has played an important role in the diets and economies of many different regions and cultures throughout history, and continues to be an important crop in many parts of the world today.
Genetics of sorghum
The genome of sorghum (2n = 2x = 20) is large and complex, with approximately 650 million base pairs (the units that make up DNA). It contains about 60,000 genes, which encode proteins that perform a variety of functions in the plant, including photosynthesis, cell division, and stress response. Sorghum has a haploid chromosome number of 10 (2n = 2x = 20), which means that it has 10 chromosomes in each of its cells.
The level of polyploidy in sorghum (the number of sets of chromosomes in the genome) is variable, with some varieties being diploid (having two sets of chromosomes) and others being tetraploid (having four sets of chromosomes). Polyploidy can occur naturally or can be induced artificially through the use of chemical or physical treatments. Polyploidy can have a variety of effects on the plant, including an increase in size and vigor, as well as an improvement in stress tolerance.
Genetic research on sorghum has focused on identifying and understanding the functions of specific genes, as well as on developing techniques for genetic improvement of the crop. For example, researchers have used genetic engineering to introduce genes into sorghum that enhance the plant’s resistance to pests and diseases, such as stem borers and leaf rust. These genes may come from other plant species or may be synthesized de novo. In addition, researchers have used traditional breeding techniques to develop new varieties of sorghum that have improved yield, drought tolerance, and other desirable traits.
In addition to its use as a food and feed grain, sorghum is also used for the production of biofuels and other industrial products. Genetic research on sorghum has also focused on identifying genes and pathways involved in the synthesis and accumulation of biofuels, as well as on developing strategies for improving the efficiency of biofuel production from sorghum.
Accepted species of sorghum
Accepted species recorded include:
- Sorghum amplum – northwestern Australia
- Sorghum angustum – Queensland
- Sorghum arundinaceum – Africa, Indian Subcontinent, Madagascar, islands of the western Indian Ocean
- Sorghum bicolor – cultivated sorghum, often individually called sorghum, also known as durra, jowari, or milo. Native to Sahel region of Africa; naturalized in many places
- Sorghum brachypodum – Northern Territory of Australia
- Sorghum bulbosum – Northern Territory, Western Australia
- Sorghum burmahicum – Thailand, Myanmar
- Sorghum controversum – India
- Sorghum × drummondii – Sahel and West Africa
- Sorghum ecarinatum – Northern Territory, Western Australia
- Sorghum exstans – Northern Territory of Australia
- Sorghum grande – Northern Territory, Queensland
- Sorghum halepense – Johnson grass – North Africa, islands of eastern Atlantic, southern Asia from Lebanon to
- Vietnam; naturalized in East Asia, Australia, the Americas
- Sorghum interjectum – Northern Territory, Western Australia
- Sorghum intrans – Northern Territory, Western Australia
- Sorghum laxiflorum – Philippines, Lesser Sunda Islands, Sulawesi, New Guinea, northern Australia
- Sorghum leiocladum – Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria
- Sorghum macrospermum – Northern Territory of Australia
- Sorghum matarankense – Northern Territory, Western Australia
- Sorghum nitidum – East Asia, Indian Subcontinent, Southeast Asia, New Guinea, Micronesia
- Sorghum plumosum – Australia, New Guinea, Indonesia
- Sorghum propinquum – China, Indian Subcontinent, Southeast Asia, New Guinea, Christmas Island, Micronesia, Cook Islands
- Sorghum purpureosericeum – Sahel from Mali to Tanzania; Yemen, Oman, India
- Sorghum stipoideum – Northern Territory, Western Australia
- Sorghum timorense – Lesser Sunda Islands, Maluku, New Guinea, northern Australia
- Sorghum trichocladum – Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras
- Sorghum versicolor – eastern + southern Africa from Ethiopia to Namibia; Oman
- Sorghum virgatum – dry regions from Senegal to the Levant.
Cultivation and production technology of sorghum
The cultivation and production technology of sorghum involves a range of steps that aim to optimize the growth and yield of the crop, while also ensuring its sustainability and viability as a food, feed, or industrial crop. Here is a more detailed step-by-step guide to the cultivation and production technology of sorghum:
Choose the right variety
Sorghum is a versatile crop that is adapted to a wide range of growing conditions. There are many different varieties of sorghum, each with its own unique characteristics. It is important to choose a variety that is well-suited to your specific growing conditions, including the climate, soil type, and intended use of the grain. Some common factors to consider when selecting a sorghum variety include:
- Plant height: Sorghum plants can range in height from less than 1 meter to over 4 meters, depending on the variety. Shorter varieties may be easier to harvest, but taller varieties may have a higher yield.
- Maturity: Sorghum varieties can vary in their maturity, with some varieties reaching maturity in as little as 60 days, while others may take up to 120 days. Choose a variety that is well-suited to your growing season.
- Drought tolerance: Sorghum is a drought-tolerant crop, but some varieties are more resistant to drought than others. If you are growing sorghum in an area with limited irrigation, choose a variety that is known for its drought tolerance.
- Pest and disease resistance: Some sorghum varieties are more resistant to pests and diseases than others. If you are growing sorghum in an area with a high risk of pests or diseases, choose a variety that has good resistance to these issues.
Prepare the soil
Sorghum grows best in well-drained, fertile soil that is rich in organic matter. Before planting, the soil should be prepared by tilling or plowing to loosen the soil and remove any weeds or debris. Fertilizers may also be applied at this time to provide the necessary nutrients for the growing plants. The pH of the soil should be between 6.0 and 7.0 for optimal sorghum growth.
Plant the seed
Sorghum is typically planted using a seed drill or planter, which places the seed at a specific depth and spacing in the soil. The seed should be planted at a depth of about 1-2 inches (2.5-5 cm) and spaced about 6-12 inches (15-30 cm) apart. The seed should be covered with soil and watered well to ensure good germination. The optimal planting time for sorghum depends on the climate and location, but it is typically planted in the spring or early summer.
Water and weed the crop
Sorghum requires regular watering during the growing season to ensure proper growth and development. Watering should be done at the base of the plants to avoid wetting the leaves, which can encourage the growth of fungi. Weeds should also be controlled to prevent competition for water and nutrients. Sorghum is a drought-tolerant crop, but it does require some water to grow properly. The amount of water needed will depend on the climate and soil conditions.
Fertilize the crop
Sorghum is a relatively low-maintenance crop, but it does benefit from fertilization to ensure optimal growth and yield. Fertilizers should be applied based on the results of a soil test, which will indicate the levels of nutrients in the soil and recommend appropriate fertilization rates. Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are the most important nutrients for sorghum growth, and these can be supplied through the use of commercial fertilizers or through the application of organic matter such as compost or animal manure.
Control pests and diseases
Sorghum is generally resistant to pests and diseases, but it can still be affected by certain issues. Common pests that can affect sorghum include stem borers, aphids, and grasshoppers. Common diseases that can affect sorghum include leaf rust, head smut, and downy mildew. Pest and disease control can be achieved through the use of chemical pesticides or through the use of cultural control methods such as crop rotation, sanitation, and proper plant spacing.
Harvest the grain
Sorghum is typically harvested when the grain is mature and the plant is dry. The grain is typically harvested using a combine or other mechanical harvester, which separates the grain from the plant. The grain is then dried, cleaned, and stored until it is ready to be used. The optimal harvest time for sorghum depends on the variety and the intended use of the grain.
Process the grain
Sorghum grain can be processed in a variety of ways, depending on its intended use. For food, the grain can be ground into flour or used to make porridge or other dishes. For feed, the grain can be ground or fed whole to livestock. For biofuels, the grain can be used to produce ethanol or other biofuels.
Diseases, pests, and weeds of sorghum
The severity of these diseases, pests, and weeds can vary depending on the specific circumstances and conditions of the sorghum crop. Some may have a greater impact on the yield and health of the plant, while others may have a more limited effect. Here is a list of diseases, pests, and weeds that can affect sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) and their effect and severity:
- Stem rot: A fungal disease that affects the stem of the sorghum plant. It can cause the plant to wilt and die, and it is spread by the movement of infected plant material.
- Leaf blight: A fungal disease that affects the leaves of the sorghum plant. It causes the leaves to become yellow and fall off, and it can reduce the yield.
- Head smut: A fungal disease that affects the flowers and head of the sorghum plant. It causes black, sooty growths to appear on the plant and can reduce the yield.
- Downy mildew: A fungal disease that affects the leaves of the sorghum plant. It causes the leaves to become yellow and fall off, and it can reduce the yield.
- Rust: A fungal disease that affects the leaves of the sorghum plant. It causes reddish-brown pustules to appear on the leaves and can reduce the yield.
- Mosaic: A viral disease that affects the leaves of the sorghum plant. It causes the leaves to become mottled and can reduce the yield.
- Black spot: A fungal disease that affects the leaves of the sorghum plant. It causes black, circular spots to appear on the leaves and can reduce the yield.
- Stem borers: Insects that bore into the stem of the sorghum plant, causing it to become weakened or die.
- Aphids: Small, sap-sucking insects that can damage the leaves and stems of the sorghum plant.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Grasshoppers: Insects that can eat the leaves and stems of the sorghum plant, reducing its yield.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Thrips: Small insects that can damage the leaves and flowers of the sorghum plant.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Whiteflies: Insects that can damage the leaves of the sorghum plant by sucking the sap out of them.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Armyworms: Insects that can eat the leaves and stems of the sorghum plant, reducing its yield.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Sorghum midge: A fly that can damage the flowers of the sorghum plant, reducing the yield.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Crabgrass: A grassy weed that can compete with the sorghum plant for water, nutrients, and light.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Johnsongrass: A grassy weed that can compete with the sorghum plant for water, nutrients, and light.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Pigweed: A broadleaf weed that can compete with the sorghum plant for water, nutrients, and light.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Sandburs: A weed that produces spiny burrs that can cling to clothing and animal fur.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Nightshade: A broadleaf weed that can compete with the sorghum plant for water, nutrients, and light.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Velvetleaf: A broadleaf weed that can compete with the sorghum plant for water, nutrients, and light.
Severity: Low to moderate
- Hogweed: A weed with a toxic sap that can cause skin irritation and blisters.
Severity: Low to moderate
By-products of sorghum
Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) is a cereal grain that is grown for a variety of purposes, including food, feed, and fuel. It also has a number of by-products that are used for various purposes. Here are some examples of by-products of sorghum and their uses:
1. Sorghum grain: The grain of sorghum is used as food for humans and animals. It is ground into flour and used to make bread, porridge, and other dishes, and it is also used as animal feed.
2. Sorghum bran: The outer layer of the sorghum grain, known as the bran, is high in fiber and nutrients. It is used as a food ingredient and as a feed for livestock.
3. Sorghum straw: The stalks of the sorghum plant, known as straw, are used as feed for livestock, as a material for papermaking, and as a raw material for the production of biofuels.
4. Sorghum oil: The seeds of sorghum contain oil that can be extracted and used as a cooking oil, as a feedstock for the production of biodiesel, and as a raw material for the production of other products.
5. Sorghum syrup: Sorghum syrup is a sweet syrup that is made by boiling down the juice of the sorghum plant. It is used as a sweetener in food and beverages, and it is also used in the production of other products such as cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.
6. Sorghum alcohol: Sorghum can be used to produce ethanol and other types of alcohol through the fermentation of its grains or other by-products. Alcohol is used as a fuel, a solvent, and a recreational beverage.
7. Sorghum biochar: Biochar is a type of charcoal that is produced from the carbonization of organic materials such as sorghum straw. It is used as a soil amendment to improve soil structure and fertility, and it can also be used to sequester carbon and mitigate climate change.
Advantages and benefits of sorghum
Sorghum is a nutritious food that is high in several essential nutrients and has a number of potential health benefits. Here are some specific ways in which sorghum may benefit your health, along with evidence and examples:
1. Rich in nutrients: Sorghum is a good source of several essential nutrients, including B vitamins, iron, and magnesium. It is also a good source of protein and fiber. For example, a serving of cooked sorghum contains about 7 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber.
2. May help with weight management: Some research suggests that sorghum may help with weight management due to its high fiber content. Fiber can help you feel full and satisfied, which may help you eat less and maintain a healthy weight.
3. May reduce the risk of chronic diseases: Sorghum is a low-fat, low-sugar grain that is relatively low in calories. As such, it may help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. For example, one study found that consuming sorghum as part of a healthy diet was associated with a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
4. May improve digestion: The fiber in sorghum may help improve digestion and prevent constipation. Sorghum is also a good source of prebiotics, which are substances that feed the beneficial bacteria in your gut and promote a healthy balance of microflora.
5. May have anti-inflammatory properties: Some research suggests that sorghum may have anti-inflammatory properties due to its content of antioxidants and other phytochemicals. Inflammation is a natural response to injury or infection, but chronic inflammation can contribute to the development of several chronic diseases.
6. May have potential benefits for people with celiac disease: Sorghum is naturally gluten-free, which makes it a good option for people with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity. These conditions are caused by an adverse reaction to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye.
7. May support cardiovascular health: Some research suggests that consuming sorghum may have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health. For example, one study found that consuming sorghum as part of a healthy diet was associated with a lower risk of developing high blood pressure. Another study found that consuming sorghum as part of a healthy diet may help lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
8. May have antioxidant properties: Sorghum is a good source of antioxidants, which are substances that help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that can contribute to the development of chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease. The antioxidants in sorghum may help neutralize free radicals and protect cells from damage.
9. May have anti-diabetic properties: Some research suggests that consuming sorghum may have beneficial effects on blood sugar control and insulin sensitivity. For example, one study found that consuming sorghum as part of a healthy diet was associated with improved blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes. Another study found that consuming sorghum as part of a healthy diet may help improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
10. May have potential benefits for bone health: Sorghum is a good source of minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium, and iron, which are important for bone health. For example, magnesium is involved in the formation and maintenance of bone, and a deficiency of this mineral has been linked to an increased risk of osteoporosis.
11. May have potential benefits for brain health: Some research suggests that consuming sorghum may have beneficial effects on brain health due to its content of antioxidants and other phytochemicals. For example, one study found that consuming sorghum as part of a healthy diet was associated with improved cognitive function in older adults.
1. Drought-resistant: Sorghum is a drought-resistant crop that can be grown in areas with low rainfall or limited access to irrigation. This makes it an important food source in areas where water is scarce. For example, sorghum is widely grown in parts of Africa where drought is a common occurrence.
2. Requires less water: Sorghum is a relatively water-efficient crop, meaning it requires less water to grow compared to other grains such as wheat or rice. This can be beneficial in areas where water resources are limited or in times of drought.
3. Can be grown in poor soil: Sorghum is a hardy crop that can be grown in poor soil conditions, including soil that is low in nutrients or has a high salt content. This makes it a good option for farmers in areas with limited access to fertilizers or where the soil has been damaged by overuse.
4. Can improve soil health: Sorghum has a deep root system that helps to loosen and aerate the soil, which can improve soil health and structure. This can be beneficial for soil fertility and crop yield in the long term.
5. Can reduce greenhouse gas emissions: Sorghum is a low-input crop that requires fewer inputs such as fertilizers and pesticides compared to other grains. This can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production of these inputs.
6. Can help reduce food waste: Sorghum is a highly nutritious food that is often used as a substitute for other grains in a variety of food products. This can help reduce food waste by utilizing grains that may otherwise go to waste.
1. Can support food security: Sorghum is a nutritious and drought-resistant crop that can be grown in a variety of climatic conditions. This makes it an important food source in areas where food security is a concern, particularly in developing countries where access to a varied and nutritious diet may be limited.
2. Can support economic development: Sorghum is an important cash crop for many farmers, particularly in developing countries. Growing and selling sorghum can provide a source of income and help support economic development in rural communities.
3. Can support cultural traditions: Sorghum is a staple food in many cultures around the world and is often used in traditional dishes and recipes. Consuming sorghum can help support cultural traditions and promote cultural diversity.
4. Can improve food accessibility: Sorghum is a relatively inexpensive grain that is widely available in many parts of the world. This can help improve food accessibility for people who may have limited access to other types of food due to financial or logistical constraints.
5. Can support sustainable agriculture: Sorghum is a low-input crop that requires fewer inputs such as fertilizers and pesticides compared to other grains. This can help support sustainable agriculture practices and reduce the environmental impact of food production.
Side effects of sorghum
Sorghum is a type of grain that is generally safe to consume and is well-tolerated by most people. However, like any food, it is possible for some people to experience side effects after consuming sorghum. Here are some potential side effects of sorghum and the reasons why they may occur:
1. Allergic reactions: Some people may be allergic to sorghum or other grains in the grass family, such as wheat, barley, and rye. Symptoms of a grain allergy may include hives, itching, swelling, difficulty breathing, and anaphylaxis.
2. Digestive issues: Consuming large amounts of fiber, such as the fiber found in sorghum, can cause digestive issues such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea in some people.
3. Interactions with medications: Sorghum may interact with certain medications, such as those used to treat diabetes or high blood pressure. It is important to speak with a healthcare provider if you are taking any medications and are considering adding sorghum to your diet.
4. Nutrient deficiencies: Consuming large amounts of sorghum or other grains as a substitute for other types of food may lead to nutrient deficiencies if the diet is not balanced. It is important to consume a variety of nutrients in order to maintain good health.
5. May interfere with absorption of certain nutrients: Some research suggests that consuming large amounts of sorghum or other grains may interfere with the absorption of certain nutrients, such as calcium and zinc. This is because some types of fiber, such as phytates, can bind to minerals and prevent their absorption in the small intestine. However, this effect can be minimized by soaking, sprouting, or fermenting grains before consuming them, as these processes can help reduce the levels of phytates.
6. May cause bloating: Sorghum and other grains contain FODMAPs, which are short-chain carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed in the small intestine. Consuming large amounts of FODMAPs can cause bloating, gas, and other digestive issues in some people. If you are sensitive to FODMAPs, you may want to consider limiting your intake of sorghum or other grains that are high in FODMAPs.
Nutritional properties of sorghum
Sorghum is a nutritious grain that is high in several essential nutrients. Here is a breakdown of the nutritional properties of sorghum, along with the daily value (DV) based on a 2,000 calorie diet:
- Protein: 7 grams per serving (14% DV)
- Fiber: 4 grams per serving (16% DV)
- Vitamin B1 (thiamin): 0.2 milligrams per serving (17% DV)
- Vitamin B3 (niacin): 1.6 milligrams per serving (10% DV)
- Vitamin B6: 0.1 milligrams per serving (5% DV)
- Folate: 36 micrograms per serving (9% DV)
- Iron: 2 milligrams per serving (11% DV)
- Magnesium: 84 milligrams per serving (21% DV)
- Phosphorus: 178 milligrams per serving (18% DV)
- Potassium: 277 milligrams per serving (8% DV)
- Zinc: 1.6 milligrams per serving (15% DV)
It is important to note that the nutritional content of sorghum can vary depending on factors such as the variety of sorghum, the growing conditions, and the processing methods used. The values provided above are for cooked sorghum and are based on a serving size of 1 cup (174 grams).
Sorghum is a versatile and nutritious grain that has a number of potential health, environmental, and social benefits. It is a good source of several essential nutrients and also a drought-resistant and low-input crop that requires less water and fewer inputs than other grains, which can have a number of environmental benefits. It is an important food source in many parts of the world and can support food security, economic development, cultural traditions, and sustainable agriculture.