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English = Pigweed Afrikaans Hanekam Scientifically = Amaranthus sp.
Course African spinach
Place of origin South Africa
Cookbook: English = Pigweed Afrikaans Hanekam Scientifically = Amaranthus sp.  Media: English = Pigweed Afrikaans Hanekam Scientifically = Amaranthus sp.

Morogo, also known as wild or African spinach, refers to a group of at least three different dark green leafy vegetables found throughout Southern Africa and harvested for human consumption. It is considered a traditional South African dish[1] and forms an important part of the staple diet in rural communities.[2]

Health benefits and safety[edit]

Morogo leaves have a protein content of up to 36%. The ultimate vitamin content is dependent on the age of the plant and method of preparation; the plants contain vitamin A and vitamin C and complement the low levels of calcium, magnesium and iron in maize.[3] In South Africa it is known as: in English = Pigweed, in Afrikaans Hanekam and Scientifically = Amaranthus sp.

An examination of three widely consumed variants have found that its consumption may lower the risk of vascular-related chronic diseases and type 2 diabetes.[4]

However, in some circumstances Morogo may increase the risk of fungal infection, specifically fusariosis, especially among imuno-compromised individuals such as those suffering from Aids. A study found high levels of Alternaria fungi in internal leaf structures and Fusarium fungi on leaf surfaces.[5] A separate study asserts that Morogo is not a natural host to Fusarium, but may be cross-infected by close proximity to maize crops.[6]