12 Propositions for Addressing Malnutrition & Food Production (Bruce French)


  1. Local plants suit local conditions.
  2. Maintain a diversity of food plants.
  3. Share knowledge and learn from locals.
  4. Collect planting materials locally.
  5. Use a mixture of plants throughout the garden.
  6. Grow dark green leaves.
  7. Grow some perennial food plants.
  8. Put the right plant in the right place.
  9. Many traditional edible plants also have medicinal value.
  10. Using local plants is low cost and offers easier availability.
  11. Attractive, well-illustrated publications can change attitudes.
  12. Use mulch and stop burning.

12 Propositions for addressing malnutrition


Food Plants International

38 West Street, Burnie Tasmania, AUSTRALIA 7320

Email: bruce.french@foodplantsinternational.com

Web: http://www.foodplantsinternational.com


Creating your own food plant books

Plants that interest me. . .

Imagine selecting the food plants from your favourite place and creating a book!  This is exactly what you can do through using a hard copy of the Food Plants International database.  I love Papua New Guinea, especially the coastal areas like Rabaul and I enjoy eating seeds.  So if I enter into the FPI database the following terms under each heading: Distribution = Sea level; Edible Portion = seed; Where does it Grow, Found in = Papua New Guinea, I come up with 219 plants with edible seeds.  If I go to print this 219 page book (File, Print), and select “save as pdf”, I can download it onto my computer.

So simple 🙂


The legacy of brave students. . .

In September 2017, Bruce French and his adult children returned to Papua New Guinea to acknowledge the legacy created by the brave agricultural students that helped begin the work of Food Plants International.

Bruce Reginald French, was an agricultural lecturer at the Vudal Agricultural College (now University of Natural Resources & the Environment) in 1974-75. Early in the role as a lecturer, previous students returned and courageously informed Bruce that the course did not adequately cover the plants and agricultural techniques relevant to Papua New Guinea.  This was a challenge and required a steep learning curve for Bruce, since he had studied temperate agriculture and the course content was established with this focus.  Never the less, Bruce worked with the students and re-wrote the curriculum, and included the wisdom and knowledge of the older local community members.

Through this process, Bruce’s eyes were opened to the wonderful food plant resources that God had provided in every village in PNG.  He recorded and researched each plant – including the pests and diseases, agricultural methods and nutritional content.  In Malnutrition could be addressed by eating the diversity of nutritious plants that already grow in each place.

On returning to Australia, Bruce continued to diligently research and record every edible plant that grows in each country and ecological zone around the world.  He now has the largest information system on food plants in the world with over 29 600 food plants.

Food Plants International now partners with community organisations and individuals to encourage people to grow the right food plants in the right places to provide the right nutrition.


Professor John Warren, Vice Chancellor.

Living with Integrity

Everyday Life: 

It is precious when you meet someone who has integrity across the many areas of their lives.  Mrs Zanze is one such lady.  She is employed to care for orphans in a group home in Zimbabwe and she does this with love, strength and wisdom.  Her knowledge of growing, preparing and cooking a range of local food plants is a key part of her home and work life.

The children in her care will learn this vital knowledge through practical skills and spoken words.  Knowing how to feed yourself well through the strategic use of God’s amazing resources is a gift for life.