International Sorghum and Millet Collaborative Research Support Program (INTSORMIL CRSP)


Date of this Version


Document Type



San Salvador, El Salvador: INTSORMIL, USAID, CENTA, Plan de Agricultura Familiar, CTI, La Campana, April 2012.


U.S. government publication.


The importance of sorghum in human nutrition and food security

The grinders of Compatible Technology International (CTI) were brought to El Salvador in 2009, for a project of CENTA-INTSORMIL/USAID to promote the grinding of sorghum for human nutrition. In 2011, ten of these grinders had been installed in small bakers associations, individual bakers, or persons producing ethnic drinks based on roasted and ground cereals. These people had been trained in sorghum use for human nutrition at the food technology laboratory of CENTA. The grinders are being used in areas were the access to other foods is limited and were sorghum can help to improve the nutritional status of the population.

Sorghum has a large potential in the effort to reduce malnutrition because it is locally produced and can be processed in very healthy foods. For that reason it has been used to substitute milk in times of scarcity, to feed elder or sick persons because of the minerals it contains and in general as a resource in case of poverty or a bad harvest of corn. Sorghum also has important dietary values for its content of fiber and antioxidants and is recommended for diabetics and celiacs because it has no gluten and its carbohydrates digest slowly. Both the availability and the nutritious quality offer important benefits for the rural communities.


INTSORMIL is a collaborative research program of the universities of Kansas, Nebraska, Ohio, Purdue and Texas A&M with the financial support of US-AID. CENTA is the national agricultural research and extension institute of El Salvador, with activities in genetic improvement of corn, bean and sorghum varieties. Several sorghum varieties have been released and distributed among the farmers and the use of sorghum for human nutrition has been demonstrated and promoted to their families and people with a small food processing business.

COMPATIBLE TECHNOLOGY INTERNACIONAL is a nonprofit organization from Minnesota, aimed at providing appropriate technology solutions for developing countries, mainly in postharvest and health topics. Their grinders are designed to produce fine flour on a small scale and at a low cost. This manual is the result of the interaction of the three organizations mentioned and of the experience obtained from grinding sorghum with the CTI grinders and training people at the Food Technology Laboratory of CENTA.