Economic exploitation and CO2-sequestration of a native West African tree – a short-cut out of rural poverty


Start date: 1 October, 2010 End date: 31 March, 2015 Project type: Smaller projects: PhD Project code: 10-062AU Countries: Burkina Faso Thematic areas: Agricultural production, Economic development and value chains, Food security and safety, Lead institution: Aarhus University (AU), Denmark Partner institutions: University of Abomey-Calavi (UAC), Benin University of Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso Policy Brief: Read Project coordinator: Mette-Helene Kronborg Andersen Total grant: 1,664,275 DKK Project files:

Project summary

The native tree species P. biglobosa is important both economically and for sustaining livelihoods for rural people in the Sahel. In particular, sale of this resource is important to women, due to the limited labour available to them. Sale of the resource entails sale of soumbala, a protein-rich condiment, made of fermented seeds from the tree. However, there is a lack of knowledge on the economic potential of this species, regarding sale of product but also sale of CO2-credits obtained through CO2-sequestration. To assess the scope using P. biglobosa for poverty alleviation, gathering of knowledge on the economic of P. biglobosa, the abundance and management of P. biglobosa, quality assessment of the end-product soumbala, and estimation of CO2-credits obtainable from P. biglobosa plantations, is conducted in this project. Analyses and investigations of these areas of interest will enable assessment of the overall economic potential of P. biglobosa. Research obtained from this project will have innovative and essential value to the Danish development research and most importantly to rural people in Burkina Faso.


Completion Report:

The main objective is to improve the livelihood in Burkina Faso through the use of P. biglobosa. The outcomes are: four scientific papers (IV: only results), a planting guide, and two implementation projects.

Paper I examines the correlates of high quality soumbala, a food product derived from P. biglobosa, and the relationship between quality and future commercialisation potential. Paper II investigates the influence of environment and management regime on the CO2 sequestration potential of P. biglobosa, and whether climate mitigation projects’ can provide economic relief to rural communities. Paper III evaluates the value chain and the barriers to further commercialisation of soumbala. Through the implementation projects (the Climate mitigation project and the Commercialisation project) the scientific findings and their applicability to improve the livelihoods are evaluated.

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