Finger millet
Eleusine coracana, commonly Finger millet (Marathi
Marathi language
Marathi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by the Marathi people of western and central India. It is the official language of the state of Maharashtra. There are over 68 million fluent speakers worldwide. Marathi has the fourth largest number of native speakers in India and is the fifteenth most...

: नाचणी, Kannada: ರಾಗಿ, Oriya
Oriya language
Oriya , officially Odia from November, 2011, is an Indian language, belonging to the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language family. It is mainly spoken in the Indian states of Orissa and West Bengal...

: ମାଣ୍ଡିଆ, Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

: ਬਾਜਰਾ, Gujarati
Gujarati language
Gujarati is an Indo-Aryan language, and part of the greater Indo-European language family. It is derived from a language called Old Gujarati which is the ancestor language of the modern Gujarati and Rajasthani languages...

: બાજરી, Tamil
Tamil language
Tamil is a Dravidian language spoken predominantly by Tamil people of the Indian subcontinent. It has official status in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and in the Indian union territory of Pondicherry. Tamil is also an official language of Sri Lanka and Singapore...

: கேழ்வரகு, Telugu
Telugu language
Telugu is a Central Dravidian language primarily spoken in the state of Andhra Pradesh, India, where it is an official language. It is also spoken in the neighbouring states of Chattisgarh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Orissa and Tamil Nadu...

: రాగి, Amharic
Amharic language
Amharic is a Semitic language spoken in Ethiopia. It is the second most-spoken Semitic language in the world, after Arabic, and the official working language of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. Thus, it has official status and is used nationwide. Amharic is also the official or working...

: ዳጉሳ Dagusa or ቶኩሶ tōkūsō), also known as African millet or Ragi is an annual plant
Annual plant
An annual plant is a plant that usually germinates, flowers, and dies in a year or season. True annuals will only live longer than a year if they are prevented from setting seed...

 widely grown as a cereal
Cereals are grasses cultivated for the edible components of their grain , composed of the endosperm, germ, and bran...

 in the arid areas of Africa
Africa is the world's second largest and second most populous continent, after Asia. At about 30.2 million km² including adjacent islands, it covers 6% of the Earth's total surface area and 20.4% of the total land area...

 and Asia
Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres. It covers 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and with approximately 3.879 billion people, it hosts 60% of the world's current human population...

. E. coracana is originally native to the Ethiopian Highlands
Ethiopian Highlands
The Ethiopian Highlands are a rugged mass of mountains in Ethiopia, Eritrea , and northern Somalia in the Horn of Africa...

 and was introduced into India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 approximately 4,000 years ago. It is very adaptable to higher elevations and is grown in the Himalaya up to 2,300 metres in elevation.
Eleusine coracana is often intercropped
Intercropping is the practice of growing two or more crops in proximity. The most common goal of intercropping is to produce a greater yield on a given piece of land by making use of resources that would otherwise not be utilized by a single crop. Careful planning is required, taking into account...

 with legumes such as peanut
The peanut, or groundnut , is a species in the legume or "bean" family , so it is not a nut. The peanut was probably first cultivated in the valleys of Peru. It is an annual herbaceous plant growing tall...

s (Arachis hypogea), cowpea
The Cowpea is one of several species of the widely cultivated genus Vigna. Four cultivated subspecies are recognised:*Vigna unguiculata subsp. cylindrica Catjang...

s (Vigna sinensis), and pigeon pea
Pigeon pea
The pigeon pea , also known as tropical green pea, toor dāl or arhar dāl , ತೊಗರಿ ಬೇಳೆ kadios , or Congo pea or gungo pea , pois Congo , gandul , gunga pea, or no-eye pea, [Cajanus...

s (Cajanus cajan), or other plants such as Niger seeds (Guizotia abyssinica
Guizotia abyssinica
Guizotia abyssinica is an erect, stout, branched annual herb, grown for its edible oil and seed. Its cultivation originated in the Ethiopian highlands, and has spread to other parts of Ethiopia...


Although statistics on individual millet
The millets are a group of small-seeded species of cereal crops or grains, widely grown around the world for food and fodder. They do not form a taxonomic group, but rather a functional or agronomic one. Their essential similarities are that they are small-seeded grasses grown in difficult...

 species are confused, and are sometimes combined with sorghum
Sorghum is a genus of numerous species of grasses, one of which is raised for grain and many of which are used as fodder plants either cultivated or as part of pasture. The plants are cultivated in warmer climates worldwide. Species are native to tropical and subtropical regions of all continents...

, it is estimated that finger millet is grown on approximately 38,000 km2.

Once harvested, the seed
A seed is a small embryonic plant enclosed in a covering called the seed coat, usually with some stored food. It is the product of the ripened ovule of gymnosperm and angiosperm plants which occurs after fertilization and some growth within the mother plant...

s keep extremely well and are seldom attacked by insect
Insects are a class of living creatures within the arthropods that have a chitinous exoskeleton, a three-part body , three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes, and two antennae...

s or moulds.