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Article

Foraging in Boreal Forest: Wild Food Plants of the Republic of Karelia, NW Russia

1
Department of Environmental Sciences, Informatics and Statistics, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Via Torino 155, 30172 Venice, Italy
2
Institute for Linguistic Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences, Tuchkov pereulok 9, 199004 St Petersburg, Russia
3
Institute of Linguistics, Literature and History of the Karelian Research Centre, Russian Academy of Sciences, Pushkinskaya St. 11, 185910 Petrozavodsk, Russia
4
Komarov Botanical Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Professor Popov St. 2, 197376 St Petersburg, Russia
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Foods 2020, 9(8), 1015; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9081015
Received: 4 July 2020 / Revised: 25 July 2020 / Accepted: 27 July 2020 / Published: 29 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Ethnobiology of Wild Foods)
While the current consumption of wild food plants in the taiga of the American continent is a relatively well-researched phenomenon, the European taiga area is heavily underrepresented in the scientific literature. The region is important due to its distinctive ecological conditions with restricted seasonal availability of wild plants. During an ethnobotanical field study conducted in 2018–2019, 73 people from ten settlements in the Republic of Karelia were interviewed. In addition, we conducted historical data analysis and ethnographical source analysis. The most widely consumed wild food plants are forest berries (three Vaccinium species, and Rubus chamaemorus), sap-yielding Betula and acidic Rumex. While throughout the lifetime of the interviewees the list of used plants did not change considerably, the ways in which they are processed and stored underwent several stages in function of centrally available goods, people’s welfare, technical progress, and ideas about the harm and benefit of various products and technological processes. Differences in the food use of wild plants among different ethnic groups living in the region were on the individual level, while all groups exhibited high variability in the methods of preparation of most used berries. The sustainability of berry use over time has both ecological and economical factors. View Full-Text
Keywords: ethnobotany; Karelia; wild food plants; Local Ecological Knowledge; Nordic studies; boreal forest ethnobotany; Karelia; wild food plants; Local Ecological Knowledge; Nordic studies; boreal forest
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kolosova, V.; Belichenko, O.; Rodionova, A.; Melnikov, D.; Sõukand, R. Foraging in Boreal Forest: Wild Food Plants of the Republic of Karelia, NW Russia. Foods 2020, 9, 1015. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9081015

AMA Style

Kolosova V, Belichenko O, Rodionova A, Melnikov D, Sõukand R. Foraging in Boreal Forest: Wild Food Plants of the Republic of Karelia, NW Russia. Foods. 2020; 9(8):1015. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9081015

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kolosova, Valeria, Olga Belichenko, Alexandra Rodionova, Denis Melnikov, and Renata Sõukand. 2020. "Foraging in Boreal Forest: Wild Food Plants of the Republic of Karelia, NW Russia" Foods 9, no. 8: 1015. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9081015

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