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Immature okra pods are commonly consumed as a vegetable. In addition, okra has attributes that could permit it to be used for other purposes. Leaves, buds, and flowers are edible; dried seeds could provide oil, protein, vegetable curd, and a coffee additive or substitute. Foliage could be used for biomass, and the dried stems could serve as a source of paper pulp or fuel. The possible gossypol and cyclopropenoid contents of okraseed must be considered when food or feed use for monogastrates is contemplated. Although little development work has been done with okra, available germ plasm appears to be sufficiently diverse to permit genetic improvement.
Economic Botany © 1982 New York Botanical Garden Press