International Year of Pulses recognizes pulses as one of the world’s most important foods
Canadian pulses are in the spotlight in 2016 as the world celebrates International Year of Pulses. The United Nations declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses (IYP) to celebrate pulses’ contribution to health, nutrition and environmental sustainability.
Many Canadians are familiar with lentils, peas, chickpeas and beans, even if they don’t know the term pulses, which are edible seeds of plants in the legume family.
Pulses are nutritional superstars, affordable and easy to prepare, and they are sustainably grown, meaning they are good for the planet, too. Pulses are a low-fat source of protein, fibre and many vitamins and minerals. They support a healthy diet and can even help in the management of diet-related diseases like diabetes and heart disease.
Canadians can also help the environment and contribute to the future of sustainable food production simply by eating pulses – they’re a low carbon, water-efficient source of protein that enriches the soil where they are grown.
Pulses are a remarkable Canadian success story. Canada’s pulse industry, which only began to see significant growth beginning in the 1970’s, is now contributing over $3 billion to Canada’s economy. Canada is the world’s largest producer and exporter of dry peas and lentils and a major supplier of pulses to over 150 countries around the world. Canada’s biggest export markets are India, China and Turkey. Pulses are Canada’s fifth largest crop, after wheat, canola, corn and barley.
The United Nations has declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses (IYP) to celebrate pulses’ contribution to health, nutrition and environmental sustainability and to demonstrate the contribution pulses can make toward global food security and helping the UN implement its 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which aims to eliminate global poverty and hunger.
For recipes and more, take “The Pulse Pledge” a 10-week commitment to eat pulses each week. Canadians can take the Pulse Pledge at pulsepledge.com.
More information about pulses can be found at www.pulsecanada.ca.
Pulse Canada, the national association representing growers, traders and processors of Canadian pulse crops (peas, beans, lentils and chickpeas), is proud to support Food Day Canada.