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No tuozaafi no food among the Dagaaba of Ghana: understanding the cultural aspects of the uses of food

Dakurah, G. and Osbahr, H. ORCID: (2023) No tuozaafi no food among the Dagaaba of Ghana: understanding the cultural aspects of the uses of food. Food, Culture & Society. ISSN 1751-7443

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1080/15528014.2023.2246237


This paper examines cultural dimensions of food among Dagaaba of north-west Ghana. Using mixed methods, the study participants comprised 8 individual key informant interviews, 150 semi-structured questionnaires, 6 focus 10 group discussions, and 34 in-depth interviews. The findings of this study indicate that, tuozaafi, the main staple is a tool that is used to welcome guests by host households and the latter are expected to prepare tuozaafi for visitors even after they have prepared a different meal for the consumption of household members. Also, this study revealed social differentiation in terms of norms and customs around food consumption with men, particularly heads of households and children being served first in food sharing. Furthermore, the study showed that men eat with men, children with children and women with women. In sum, in this examination, it is argued that, the consumption of food goes beyond meeting nutritional and biological needs to nurturing social relations and meeting ritual significance. This therefore implies that, individuals, and households’ decisions on food consumption, and the cultural significance of food particularly tuozaafi in the Dagaaba cultural milieu are potential pathways for understanding future outcomes of interventions that seek to enhance the nutritional value of local foods.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of International Development
ID Code:113152
Publisher:Informa UK Limited

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