Wednesday, 18 September 2013

whilst traipsing around this small Ilala "forest" on the banks of the Zambezi, I came across this "religious set up".......maybe its the local people hoping for good sap to make the intoxicating palm wine for the season.....

One report (Moll 1972) states that it is highly intoxicating, but another (Coates Palgrave 2002) suggests that the wine is relatively mild, with an alcohol content of some 5-10%, which lies between the beers and wines sold commercially here. According to Coates Palgrave, the viciously intoxicating product is a spirit distilled from the palm wine. The raw material for these products is sap gathered by cutting off the top of a growing stem and harvesting the exudate. The sap hardens over the wound in due course, and another layer of stem is cut away until eventually the growing point is completely destroyed and the stem dies. Often when this happens the lala palm will sucker from the base, and so that individual is not killed. Moll considers the wine to be an important source of B-group vitamins for those who consume it.

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