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In Venezuela, Mango Trees Are Becoming a Last Resort for Food

Fruit Trees Lining City Streets Are Now A Backup Destination When Supermarkets Are Closed


JUNE 21, 2016 AT 9:48 AM

Mango trees are abundant in the Venezuelan capital, Caracas. (PanAm Post)


In several TV shows, radio shows and digital reports people are seen having mangoes for breakfast, dinner or lunch, not just because they are delicious, but because they are “the only thing they can get” in Venezuela’s crisis of high food prices and food scarcity.

For many Venezuelans, mangos have substituted what little they are able to buy at supermarkets. As a result, some have begun to commercialize them.

Read more: Venezuelan Newspapers Attacked with Excrement over Critical Reporting

Read more: Hunger by Design: How Venezuela Keeps Dissidence Under Control

Caracas has one of the country’s most abundant mango reserves, some dating back more than 100 years, and which survived thanks to the local government’s care.

Director for the Foundation of Urban Memory Hannia Gómez said there are over 400 different species of mango trees within the city, giving each street its own identity.

“That is the case of the Samanes, Jabillos, Mangos, Chaguaranos and Acacias,”
she said.

 “These species are part urbanization and need to always exist.”

Gómez added counties disrespect the original landscape of Caracas and “refuse to acknowledge the city’s plants.”

One of the major reserves of mango trees is in Chacao, where there have been a number of initiatives to protect the presence of nature within the city space.

Mango Season

According to the 2015 annual report published by the Venezuelan Education Program for Human Rights (Provea), scarcity, inflation and high cost of food keep increasing. According to the Venezuela Central Bank (BCV), the accumulated variation of the National Consumer Price Index (INPC) was 180.9 percent during 2015 and around 315 percent for food.

According to the Center of Documentation and Social Analysis of the Venezuelan Teacher Association (Cendas-FVM), the price for food considered a basic necessity rose 718 percent in comparison with April 2015. By the close of April, around 13 minimum wages were required to buy enough food for five family members. Sixty-five percent of Venezuelan workers earn the equivalent of a minimum wage.

According to a Datanálisis study of April 2016, only 3.6 percent had a favorable opinion of food provisioning and of general access to basic products. The government stopped publishing data about scarcity.

But the mango has helped alleviate the struggle for some Venezuelans.

It was common, years ago, to walk in the streets of Caracas and step over mangoes on the ground. But it is more common nowadays to bump into a young child picking the fruits to take home.

Ysol Delgado

Ysol Delgado is a reporter with the PanAm Post from Caracas, Venezuela. She studied journalism at the Monteávila University. Follow her on Twitter:@Ysolita.

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While "Flavor" is very subjective, and each country that grows mangoes is very nationalistic, these are the mango varieties that are the most sought after around the world because of sweetnesss (Brix) and demand.

The Chaunsa has a Brix rating in the 22 degree level which is unheard of!
Carabao claims to be the sweetest mango in the world and was able to register this in the Guiness book of world records.
Perhaps it is time for a GLOBAL taste test ???

In alphabetical order by Country....



Alphonso (mango)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Alphonso (हापुस Haapoos in Marathi, હાફુસ in Gujarati, ಆಪೂಸ್ Aapoos in Kannada) is a mango cultivar that is considered by many[who?] to be one of the best in terms of sweetness, richness and flavor. 

It has considerable shelf life of a week after it is ripe making it exportable. 

It is also one of the most expensive kinds of mango and is grown mainly in Kokan region of western India.

 It is in season April through May and the fruit wei…

INDIA 2016 : Mango production in state likely to take a hit this year

TNN | May 22, 2016, 12.32 PM IST

Mangaluru: Vagaries of nature is expected to take a toll on the production of King of Fruits - Mango - in Karnataka this year. A combination of failure of pre-monsoon showers at the flowering and growth stage and spike in temperature in mango growing belt of the state is expected to limit the total production of mango to an estimated 12 lakh tonnes in the current season as against 14 lakh tonnes in the last calendar year.

However, the good news for fruit lovers is that this could see price of mangoes across varieties decrease marginally by 2-3%. This is mainly on account of 'import' of the fruit from other mango-growing states in India, said M Kamalakshi Rajanna, chairperson, Karnataka State Mango Development and Marketing Corporation Ltd.

Karnataka is the third largest mango-growing state in India after Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra.

Inaugurating a two-day Vasanthotsava organized by Shivarama Karantha Pilikula Nisargadhama and the Corporation at P…

Mangoes date back 65 million years according to research ...

Experts at the Birbal Sahni Institute of Palaeobotany (BSIP) here have traced the origin of mango to the hills of Meghalaya, India from a 65 million year-old fossil of a mango leaf. 

The earlier fossil records of mango (Mangifera indica) from the Northeast and elsewhere were 25 to 30 million years old. The 'carbonized leaf fossil' from Damalgiri area of Meghalaya hills, believed to be a mango tree from the peninsular India, was found by Dr R. C. Mehrotra, senior scientist, BSIP and his colleagues. 

After careful analysis of the fossil of the mango leaf and leaves of modern plants, the BISP scientist found many of the fossil leaf characters to be similar to mangifera.

An extensive study of the anatomy and morphology of several modern-day species of the genus mangifera with the fossil samples had reinforced the concept that its centre of origin is Northeast India, from where it spread into neighbouring areas, says Dr. Mehrotra. 

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