Comparative Proximate and Mineral Composition of Moringa oleifera and Moringa ovalifolia Grown in Central Namibia

  •  Morlu Korsor    
  •  Charles Ntahonshikira    
  •  Haruna Bello    
  •  Habauka Kwaambwa    


The objective of this study was to compare the proximate and mineral compositions of Moringa oleifera and Moringa ovalifolia grown together at Neudamm Experimental Farm in central Namibia. Moringa oleifera is well known for its rich nutritional value and was compared to the nutritional value of M. ovalifolia, a native plant of Namibia and Angola, which is less studied. Namibia being a semi-arid country, many plants in the rangelands are low in nutrients essential for livestock nutrition. This creates the necessity for planting fodder trees like moringa that withstand the harsh climatic conditions and retain their nutritional quality for the production of sustained livestock supplement. Leaves of both Moringa species were harvested with twiglets, shade dried fortnightly and taken to the laboratory where they were ground and passed through 1 mm sieve for proximate and mineral analysis. Statistically, M. oleifera nutrient values were significantly different (P < 0.05) in moisture, ash, crude protein (CP) and crude fiber (CF) from M. ovalifolia, but had no differences in fat, acid detergent fiber (ADF) and neutral detergent fiber (NDF). Also, M. oleifera was significantly different (P < 0.05) from M. ovalifolia in potassium (K), magnesium (Mg), copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn), but there were no differences in calcium (Ca), sodium (Na), phosphorus (P), iron (Fe) and manganese (Mn) values. This implies that both Moringa species have similar quantity of Ca, Na, P, Fe and Mn in their leaf tissues. The almost identical nutrient values of the two Moringa species, suggests that M. ovalifolia could serve as an alternative supplement for livestock since there is a known human-livestock competition for M. oleifera, and since M. ovalifolia is native and well adapted to the harsh environmental conditions of Namibia.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.