Mangos and Mangoes

The paisley pattern, developed in India, is based on the mango.

 

In 1980 India produced more than 10 times as many mangos as Thailand, the next largest producer. In 2019 India produced over 25 million tons of mangos (over 50% of mangos worldwide), Indonesia produced over 3 million and China produced just under 2.5 million. The UK imports around 60,000 tons of mangos a year of which roughly 10% comes from India.

 

Alphonso mangos were banned in Europe in 2014 when a consignment was found to be infested with "non-European fruit flies", however the ban was lifted in 2015. To enter Europe Indian mangos are now heat treated, meaning they are dipped in hot water to ensure that no fruit flies come in with them and put European salads and other crops at risk; although this discourages some shops from buying them as it affects the ripening process, sometimes accelerating and sometimes delaying it. All Indian mangos were banned in the US in 1989. Bush allowed mango imports in 2007 after which India slashed the duty on imports of American Harley Davidson motorcycles.

 

Alphonso and other mangos are just starting to come into season now; the peak of the season is in July. Mangos or mangoes (both spellings are accepted) are considered drupes or stone fruits, although inside is really a seed with a hard coating. The mango tree is part of the Anacardiaceae family which includes the cashew tree, poison ivy, smoketree and sumac. Young mangos are eaten in other countries, they are green and non-sweet, often served with a vinaigrette or just dipped in salt. Yummy.

 

Ripe mangos are approximately 1/7 sugar (by weight), however the sugar comes with lots of fibre and nutrients which makes it less harmful than added sugars. Mangos are also very high in Vitamins C and A, and they contain magnesium, potassium and folic acid.

Vitamin C helps improve the absorption of iron in your diet, so is good for vegetarians. Vitamin C is also a powerful antioxidant and is considered protective against heart disease, high blood pressure, dementia and against general illness by boosting the immune system.

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