Niger Seeds (Ramtilli)

Niger seed is an oilseed crop produced principally in Ethiopia, India, Myanmar and Nepal. Thirty percent of the seed is oil. When extracted the oil is used in foods, for paint and soap making and for lighting. In Ethiopia this is the main edible oil in use. In India about 75 percent of the harvested seeds are used for oil extraction while the rest is exported for bird food. Roasted or fried seeds are eaten as a snack or used as a condiment. The press-cake from oil extraction contains 31 to 40 percent protein and is used for feeding cattle. In the United States of America, Niger seed is considered a high value crop for the bird food industry, and initiatives have been underway to introduce it as a cash crop alternative for grain farmers in the Mid-West.

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