Diversity of wild edible minor fruits used by the ethnic communities of Tripura, India
The present study deals with the identification, documentation and exploration of wild edible fruits consumed by different indigenous inhabitants in four districts of Tripura, viz. Khowai (forest of Tablabari, Tulsigarh and Subalsingh), West Tripura (forest of Barmura), Sipahijala and Dhalai (forest of Manu, Ambassa). Wild fruits available in the mentioned area remain one of the major seasonal food intakes and play an important role in well-balanced diet and maintain healthy living of tribal people of Tripura. These fruits have a great socio-economic significance because of their food, nutritional, and medicinal values. Exploration, documentation, preservation and popularization of wild fruits are very important as cheap sources of food for human consumption. Here, a total of 15 wild edible fruits belonging to 13 families were recorded with their botanical, family, and local names in Bengali, Kakborak and Reang, time of availability, taste and use as folk medicines. Most of these fruits are supposed to be extinct, thus, utmost care to be taken for preservation.