Oil extracted from the seeds of fruit has antioxidant benefits and is used in cosmetics for its anti-ageing properties.
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For generations Algerians like the Gueldsami family have barely been able to eke out a living growing prickly pear fruits, but thanks to the cactus' new found virtues their lives are steadily improving.Scientific reports indicate that the Opuntia species of prickly pears which thrives in arid regions like Algeria's northern Sidi Fredj contains a plethora of virtues.A 2017 study by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization concluded prickly pears could be the answer to much of the world's food security woes and prevent soil erosion.Around 80 percent of Algeria, Africa's largest country, is arid or semi-arid, providing an ideal terrain for farming prickly pears.In Sidi Fredj, the Gueldsami family and others have seen their revenues increase thanks to farming and selling prickly pears.Algeria is a country of 40 million where half the population is under 30, with one in three young people unemployed.This includes women who take part in the harvest of prickly pears and young people.
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