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Carotenoid and riboflavin content of banana cultivars from Makira, Solomon Islands

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Englberger, L., Lyons, G., Foley, W., Daniells, J. W., Aalbersberge, B., Dolodolotawake, U., Watoto, C., Iramu, E., Taki, B., Wehi, F., Warito, P. and Taylor, M. (2010) Carotenoid and riboflavin content of banana cultivars from Makira, Solomon Islands. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, 23 (6). pp. 624-632. ISSN 0889-1575

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Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jfca.2010.03.002


The Solomon Islands face problems of vitamin A deficiency and infectious diseases, including malaria. It is essential to identify nutrient-rich indigenous foods for preventing and alleviating these diseases. Previous work in Micronesia identified yellow/orange-fleshed carotenoid-rich banana cultivars, in particular Fe’i cultivars (characterized by upright bunches), with potential to alleviate vitamin A deficiency. Although there is a great diversity of Solomon Islands bananas, little is documented about these cultivars and their nutrient content. Using an ethnographic approach, this study aimed to identify nutrient-rich cultivars and to collect information relating to production and consumption. Seven Fe’i cultivars (not previously analyzed) and three non-Fe’i cultivars were assessed for flesh color, fruit size and other attributes and analyzed for provitamin A carotenoids (β- and α-carotene), total carotenoids and riboflavin. Five Fe’i and two non-Fe’i cultivars were identified as carotenoid-rich. Of 10 cultivars analyzed the concentrations of β-carotene equivalents ranged from 45 to 7124 μg/100 g. Compared to cultivars with light-colored flesh, the yellow/orange-fleshed cultivars generally contained higher carotenoid concentrations. All Fe’i cultivars contained riboflavin, from 0.10 to 2.72 mg/100 g, some having substantial concentrations. The nutrient-rich cultivars, including Fe’i, should be promoted for their potential to contribute to vitamin A intake and overall health.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Horticulture and Forestry Science
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural chemistry. Agricultural chemicals
Plant culture > Fruit and fruit culture > Culture of individual fruits or types of fruit > Bananas
Live Archive:17 Jan 2023 04:58
Last Modified:17 Jan 2023 04:58

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