Oil Seeds

Ethiopia is one of the centres of biodiversity for oilseeds variety. Sesame seed, Niger seed, Mustard seed, Pumpkin, Sunflower, Rape Seed, Castor Seed and Groundnuts are the variety of oilseeds which can be considered specialty, high-value seeds on the international market.

Ethiopia is known by high altitudes with very different climates. This enables the country to grow a wide range of oilseeds, in which it has a long tradition. In terms of export, oilseeds are the second-largest export commodity from Ethiopia and sesame seed is the main oilseed export product.

Oil Seed Types

Linseed is mainly used for the domestic consumption in Ethiopia.

In Ethiopia a large number of sesame seed varieties exist. The varieties that are well known are Humera Gonder and Wellega. The Humera variety is appreciated worldwide for its aroma and sweet taste. It is suitable for various bakery products. The Gonder type is also suitable for the bakery market. The major competitive advantage of the Wellega type is its high oil content.

Niger scientifically known as Guizotia abyssinica is an oilseed crop that belongs to the Asteraceae family and on Guizotia genus. It is originated in Ethiopia, and its wild ancestor is likely Guizotia schimperi Sch.Bip. It was probably domesticated before 3000 BC in the highlands of Ethiopia, where it is still cultivated as an oilseed crop.