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Wild rice, also known as Indian rice, is an important traditional food source for Native American tribes of the Great Lakes region. The Menominee people even take their tribal name from a native word for wild rice (manoomin). Many Native American cultures of this region consider wild rice a sacred gift from the Creator, the culture hero, or a special rice spirit, and there are many Native rituals and ceremonies associated with the wild rice harvest. Besides being an important food crop, wild rice was also traded to tribes who weren't able to collect it themselves in exchange for different goods.
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