JIS News

Several Afro-Jamaican foods and herbs will be highlighted at the National Museum West (NMW) virtual panel discussion today, Thursday, February 25, beginning at 10:00 a.m.

The discussion, under the theme ‘Nourishment and Healing: The Food and Herbs of Afro-Jamaica’, is being held to mark Black History Month, which celebrates the contribution of the Black African community to the world.

The public can participate in the event, which will be broadcast on the NMW’s YouTube Page.

Curator at the National Museum West, Sharifa Balfour, told JIS News that the purpose of the discussion is to educate Jamaicans and “to facilitate the preservation of the various cultural practices in Jamaica”.

She said that Jamaicans are accustomed to hearing about the contribution of the Black African community in the areas of music, dances and art “but it is rare that we talk about food and herbs”.

As such, she said that the discussion will highlight several foods that came from Africa, such as, okra, ackee, yam, tamarind, bizzy, cerasee, castor nut and sorrel.

Panellists will include pharmacist, author and herbalist Dr. Diane Robertson; Colonel of the Moore Town Maroons, Colonel Wallace Sterling; and PhD candidate in the Department of History and Archaeology, University of the West Indies (UWI), Charmaine McKenzie.

NMW is the sister museum to the National Museum Jamaica and is the national agent for the collection, preservation and documentation of Jamaica’s material culture.

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