Baru, also known as cumbaru, barujo ou coco-feijão, for which the scientific name is Dypterix alata vog, it's a Cerrado originary plant. Cerrado is the Brazilian Savanna, biome that corresponds to ¼ of the national territory. Until 60's it was barely known as food source. From the moment people started eating it up to nowadays, its consumption has grown in large scale, therefore, comes the need to develop projects that define a social-educational ground in exploring this commodity.
Due to needs demanded by the Brazilian Forest Code (Law), especially those related to reforestation of
RFL (Legal Forests Reserve) and APP (Permanent Preservation Area), the Baru has shown up as an excellent alternative.
Additionally, Baruzeiro can also be grown as hardwood stock, as the quality of the wood is considered excellent.
Another well know applicability is the shading used in livestock.
Livestock exposed to radioactive effects of the sun, suffer more from heat stress than those animals protected in shady locations.
In the case of fruit trees, the benefit is even greater because the
Baru is far appreciated by the cattle and its high nutritional value offers
further benefits to the livestock.
Due to energy wealth of its nutrients
(vitamins, minerals and fats), the baru nuts
are associated with sexuality, thus revealing a naturally aphrodisiac food.
Other benefits are related to cholesterol reduction and prevention of cardiovascular diseases. It's rich in minerals such as zinc, magnesium, iron, phosphorus and potassium and also in fatty acids.
It also has anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties due to presence of catechin and gallic and elagic acids. Its importance in medicinal use has been noted in several studies that are under development.
The public and personal awareness aimed by the project
about its importance in food, considering
its high nutritional value, because, among other properties, it has
protein level of 26.3% (higher than the value found in coconut) and lipids (33.3%).
Among the last ones, 75.6% unsaturated fatty acids, like omega 3, 6 and 9.
In Brazilian middle-west, Baru is already part, frequently, of its culinary and, as the big city's citizens are becoming aware of studies related, it is beginning to be accepted and used by chefs in upscale restaurants.
Those are just one of the reasons that highlights a greater need for advertising and propaganda of which Baru is, which is one of the goals of this project. Experts in food and nutritional sciences are already bringing forward their researches in order to enlighten the numerous benefits of Baru consumption. The consumption should be well oriented, since Baru is very caloric.