In the quest to promote African cuisines and food, African Uziiza and Food Network have announced a partnership to host the maiden Virtual New Yam Festival on Instagram Live.
According to Duchess Nena, a UK-based vegan chef and founder of Uziiza, a platform dedicated to promoting plant based and healthy eating in African communities and Diaspora, the one day event will take place on September 5 2020 on Instagram Live and will feature a series of activities like the yam feast, question and answer session, recipes, entertainment and unlocking myths behind the ancient Igbo tradition.
According to her, the new yam festival is a significant festival that all Igbo celebrate, not just in the South-East but all over the world. She said the iwa ji (breaking yam) and iri-ji ohuru (eating new yam) festival is a cultural feast with deep meaning in Igbo cosmology.
The Uziza boss stated that the festival is part of history and culture that illustrates the importance of yam in Igbo people’s socio-cultural life, adding that he yam is considered the king of crops in Igboland because it is the first crop to be harvested in the farming cycle.
She explained that the new yam festival consists of an expression of a religious belief of the people in the supreme deity as giver of yam and the bringer of a fruitful harvest.
Nena posited that African Food Network and Uziiza decided to host the festival to ensure that “our rich culture is protected from going into extinction even as we sojourn in search for greener pasture, adding that they were doing this regardless of the ongoing pandemic that has crippled economic and social life of the people.
She said the event was meant to reiterate the relevance of the new yam festival in modern time because culture and tradition should stand the test of time.
According to her, there will be live discussions on the significance of celebrating the new yam festival by His Imperial Highness. C. O. Onyeike (Ugo_Mba 1 of Item Okpi Ancient Kingdom, Onye_NduNdigbo Dum Europe).
Nena stated that there will be “My new yam festival experience with Igbo music legend popularly known as Mr Raw Nwanne,” adding that Chef SolumKolia Obi-Anazodo, a game changer, will give live yam recipe tutorials