Food security is a complex issue, linked to availability and access
to food, malnutrition in the population, economic development,
environment, and local and global trade. Malnutrition hinders healthy
growth and proper development of the human immune system affecting
neurological and cognitive development especially in children. Protein calorie malnutrition is a major nutritional problem in many developing
countries. Considering the projected increase of world population to 9
billion by 2050, it is a huge challenge to meet the food and nutritional
security of the growing world. Grain legumes are an important part of
Afro-Asian diet and major providers of protein and calories in this
region. Grain legumes are considered to be a good source of protein,
carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and other compounds that have
significant nutritional arid health-related benefits which would very
effectively address both malnutrition and food insecurity problems.
Under the climate change scenario, there is an urgent need to diversify
the cropping pattern by promoting cultivation of grain legumes due to
their adaptation to different regions and climates. Important legumes
that form a part of our daily diet in various forms include peas, beans,
lentils, chickpea, pigeonpea, soybean, and groundnut. In this chapter
we have briefly highlighted the global trade and economics-related
aspects; and nutritional composition of important food legumes.
Source: Pigeonpea OAR