Biting into juicy summer mangoes is almost a rite of passage for Indians. But how well do we know our favourite fruit? Here are some must-know mango facts for you!
#1 Mangoes have a Mughal connection
Emperor Akbar was so fond of mangoes that he planted an entire orchard of them. This mango orchard called Lakhi Bagh near Darbhanga, Bihar had over 100,000 mango trees.
Each mango tree yields 500-2000 fruits every season. Because mangoes are delicate, every fruit must be plucked by hand so that it doesn’t fall to the ground and get crushed. Do the math, Bigbasketeer, and guess how many workers must have been employed at Lakhi Bagh! 😲
Our mango farmers have a simple, clever scythe & net arrangement to pluck mangoes by the bunch without damaging a single fruit. Catch a glimpse of our partner Ratnagiri Alphonso farm here. 👇
#2 Mango sap can sting!
Bigbasketeer, mangoes belong to the anacardiaceae family of flowering trees whose other members include cashew nuts, pistachios, and poison ivy. The sap or other parts of these contain an oily allergen called urushiol which causes itching and a stinging sensation if touched directly.
The same sap can also damage the mango if allowed to ooze and remain on its skin. Farmers have different ways of preventing this. They arrange harvested mangoes on a wooden crate with holes with the ‘beak’ facing up and the stem facing down. So the sap drips onto the ground without touching the mango skin!
Here’s a glimpse of how desapping is done in our partner mango farms.
#3 Mango trees believe in self-care
Mango trees start flowering when they are 6-7 years old and yield fruit for over 50 years. That’s a long time to be productive! Just as we take steps to prevent burnout, mango trees give themselves breaks! They do this through a behaviour called alternate bearing.
During ‘on’ years, they give fantastic yields, bearing thousands of fruit. The next year is an ‘off’ year where they give themselves to rest and invest in growing shoots and leaves. So the fruit yield will be low. This behaviour is seen at an orchard level and happens irrespective of the weather, soil, or growing conditions. Isn’t that amazing?
#4 We eat most of the mangoes we produce
India produces almost half of the world’s mangoes with an annual output of more than 20 million tonnes. Yet, only about 1% of this is exported—the rest is consumed locally. We are clearly a nation of mango lovers!
Around 1000 varieties of mangoes grow in India but 30 or so are the most popular. These include Alphonso, Ratnagiri, Banganapalli, Badami, Kesar, Chausa, Langra, Raspuri, Totapuri, and Mallika among others.
Have we got your mouth watering, Bigbasketeer? Order your favourite mangoes now on BigBasket!
All our mangoes are safely ripened in crates packed with hay without the use of harmful chemicals like carbides, thus preserving their flavour, juices, and nutrition.
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