Mbulelo Mpofu, Showbiz Reporter
TODAY, all roads lead to Amagugu International Heritage Centre (AIHC) at Matobo for the sixth annual Amagugu Traditional Food Festival where people from all walks of life are set to exhibit, learn and enjoy the country’s traditional gourmet dishes.
The collaborative expo between the African Food Revolution and Amagugu International Heritage Centre will help amplify indigenous African foods into uncharted food territories.
The two-day food extravaganza running under the theme, “Our Food, Our Heritage, Our Future” will also see continental chefs, food science experts, farmers and foodie lovers converge for a conference which will be spearheaded by historian and Amagugu International Heritage Site CEO Pathisa Nyathi.
Amagugu International Heritage Centre programs manager, Arlington Ndlovu said the expo’s inclusivity was key for the revival of the Matabeleland region’s food industry.
“Our expo is all-inclusive and as a result, the revival of our food industry is key. We will get to see corporates, women from the Matobo district, and other food experts meet in one place to showcase traditional food as well as teach people which crops to plant given the climate change. The expo is a showcase of the climate change resilience skills of the local people. The expo will also provide deeper knowledge into the role of villages in promoting food security, nutrition, and job creation in African communities. Much focus will be on village entrepreneurship, food regulations for exporting in agriculture, novel foods, traditional foods, food safety in villages, the role of culture in the marketing mix, recipe documentation and formulations, packaging technologies and a new African culinary experience,” Ndlovu said.
Some of the traditional dishes to be exhibited at the expo include sorghum beer, isitshwala, umkumbi, umcaba and umxhanxa among others.
Speakers will include Ali-Douglas Research Network’s director, Dr Nqobizitha Dube; Alfred Sihwa; Shaun Matsheza; Great Zimbabwe University lecturer, Martison Nhamo; University of Kwazulu-Natal’s Dr Divane Nzima; Innocent Mazarura; Munch and Sip Food Festival founder Mandipa Masuku; Midlands State University lecturer Dr Nomagugu Ndlovu; Carl Joshua Ncube and Hon. Minister of Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Nqobizitha Mangaliso Ndlovu.
Presentations and topics to be discussed at the expo will include Traditional Food Consumption in Zimbabwe, Insect-based instant porridge, Bee-Keeping in Zimbabwe a practical approach and Indigenous wild fruits and malnutrition. – @eMKlass_49